Brazilian Journal of Anesthesiology
Brazilian Journal of Anesthesiology
Original Investigation

Minimum effective volume of local anesthetic in peribulbar block: does it differ with the eyeball axial length?

Sanaa M. El Fawal, Walid H. Nofal, Eman A.S. Sabek, Wail Ahmed Abdelaal

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Peribulbar Anesthesia (PBA) is a relatively safe method for cataract surgery. The anesthetic volume should be adjusted according to the axial eyeball length. Thus, using Minimum Effective Volume (MEV) of local anesthetic helps avoiding unnecessary volumes, preventing increases in intra-ocular pressure, and producing satisfactory conditions for cataract surgery. This study aims to determine the MEV90 of local anesthetics in relation to eye globe axial length in peribulbar blocks for cataract surgery.

Patients scheduled for cataract extraction under local anesthesia were divided according to their axial eyeball length; Group 1 included those with axial length from 22 to 24 mm, Group 2 included patients with axial length from 24.1 to 26 mm. The initial volume used was 7 mL of a solution of bupivacaine 0.5% (3 mL) + lidocaine 2% (3 mL) + hyaluronidase 150 IU (1 mL). The subsequent volumes were dependent on the response of the previous patient, by using a Bias Coin Design (BCD) and Up and Down Method (UDM) for MEV-90 determination.

The study was concluded with 119 patients. Sixteen patients needed supplemental volume of local anesthetic in Group 1 and thirteen in Group 2. The MEV90 for Group 1 was approximately 5.82 mL (95% CI 5.6 to 5.87 mL) and 5.45 mL for Group 2 (95% CI 5.38 to 5.91 mL). No major complications were noted. There was a negative correlation between the effective volume of LA and eye globe axial length in both groups (p = 0.001).

The MEV90 of local anesthetics for peribulbar block show a strong and inverse correlation with eye globe axial length. This may help achieving an effective block with minimum complications.


Peribulbar anesthesia;  Minimum effective volume;  Axial eyeball length


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