Brazilian Journal of Anesthesiology
https://bjan-sba.org/article/doi/10.1016/j.bjane.2019.10.003
Brazilian Journal of Anesthesiology
Clinical Information

Intermittent loss of consciousness during cesarean section under spinal anesthesia: a case report

Perda intermitente de consciência durante cesariana sob raquianestesia: relato de caso

Selda Kayaalti

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Abstract

Abstract Loss of consciousness during spinal anesthesia is a rare but scary complication. This complication is generally related to severe hypotension and bradycardia, but in this case, the loss of consciousness occurred in a hemodynamically stable parturient patient. We present a 31 years-old patient who underwent an emergency cesarean section. She lost consciousness and had apnea that started 10 minutes after successful spinal anesthesia and repeated three times for a total of 25 minutes, despite the stable hemodynamics of the patient. The case was considered a subdural block, and the patient was provided with respiratory support. The subdural block is expected to start slowly (approximately 15-20 minutes), but in this case, after about 10 minutes of receiving anesthesia, the patient suddenly had a loss of consciousness. After the recovery of consciousness and return of spontaneous respiration, the level of a sensory block of the patient, who was cooperative and oriented, was T4. There were motor blocks in both lower extremities. Four hours after intrathecal injection, both the sensory and motor blocks ended, and she was discharged two days later with no complications. Hence, patients who receive spinal anesthesia should be closely observed for any such undesirable complications.

Keywords

Anesthesia, Obstetric, Complications, Subdural block, Unconsciousness

Resumo

Resumo A perda de consciência durante a raquianestesia é uma complicação rara, mas assustadora. Essa complicação geralmente está relacionada à grave hipotensão e bradicardia, mas, neste caso, a perda de consciência ocorreu em uma paciente parturiente hemodinamicamente estável. Apresentamos o caso de uma paciente de 31 anos, submetida a uma cesariana de emergência. A paciente perdeu a consciência e apresentou apneia que teve início 10 minutos após a raquianestesia bem-sucedida e repetiu o episódio três vezes por 25 minutos, a despeito de sua hemodinâmica estável. O caso foi considerado como um bloqueio subdural e a paciente recebeu suporte respiratório. Espera-se que o bloqueio subdural inicie lentamente (aproximadamente 15-20 minutos), mas, neste caso, cerca de 10 minutos após a anestesia, a paciente repentinamente perdeu a consciência. Após a recuperação da consciência e o retorno da respiração espontânea, a paciente que estava orientada e cooperativa apresentou nível de bloqueio sensorial em T4. Havia bloqueio motor em ambas as extremidades inferiores. O bloqueio sensório-motor terminou quatro horas após a injeção intratecal e a paciente recebeu alta hospitalar dois dias depois, sem complicações. Considerando o exposto, os pacientes que recebem raquianestesia devem ser atentamente observados para quaisquer complicações indesejáveis.

Palavras-chave

Anestesia, Obstetrícia, Complicações, Bloqueio subdural, Inconsciência

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