Uteroplacental and fetal circulation during extradural bupivacaine-adrenaline and bupivacaine for caesarean section in hypertensive pregnancies with chronic fetal asphyxia

S. Alahuhta, Juha Rasanen, P. Jouppila, R. Jouppila, A. I. Hollmén

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Scopus citations


We have studied the effects of an extradural block during Caesarean section using either bupivacaine plain or with adrenaline 85-100 μg on blood velocity waveforms of maternal uterine and placental arcuate arteries and fetal umbilical, renal and middle cerebral arteries, in 20 hypertensive parturients with chronic fetal asphyxia. Fetal myocardial function was investigated at the same time by M-mode echocardiography. Extradural anaesthesia resulted in a significant decrease in maternal mean systolic and diastolic arterial pressures in both groups, but this was more marked after plain bupivacaine. There were no significant differences in any of the Doppler recordings relative to baseline values after plain bupivacaine, but after bupivacaine with adrenaline there were significantly increased blood flow velocity indices for the maternal uterine and placental arcuate arteries and significantly decreased indices in the fetal renal and middle cerebral arteries. Neonatal outcome as evaluated by Apgar scores and acid-base values in the umbilical cord were similar in the two groups. The results suggest that adrenaline added to the solution of bupivacaine increased vascular resistance in the uteroplacental circulation, indicating impaired blood flow.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)348-353
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Anaesthesia
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1993
Externally publishedYes



  • Anaesthesia, obstetric Caesarean section
  • Anaesthetic techniques: extradural
  • Placenta: umbilical blood flow
  • Uterus: blood flow

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Mathematics(all)
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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