Traditionally, caudal epidurals are performed by a landmark-guided approach using the loss of resistance technique. Improvisations to increase the success rate can be attained by implementing modalities, namely neurostimulation and ultrasound, but there is a paucity of literature comparing these 3 approaches. Here, we compare the 3 techniques in terms of the success rate.
Materials and Methods:
The primary outcome of this study was to compare the success rate of the 3 techniques, and the secondary outcome was the blood or cerebrospinal fluid aspiration during the procedure. It was a prospective, randomized, open-label parallel-group study. Three hundred children aged 1 to 5 years scheduled for circumcision, hypospadias repair, and minor lower extremity surgeries were enrolled after taking written informed consent from the parents.
Demographic profiles were comparable in terms of age, weight, sex distribution, and types of surgeries. Success rates in landmark-guided, neurostimulation-guided, and ultrasound-guided were 97%, 97%, and 98%, respectively which was comparable (P=0.879). There was no significant difference in the incidence of blood or cerebrospinal fluid aspiration.
We found a similar success rate of the caudal epidural block by using landmark-guided, nerve stimulation–guided, or ultrasound-guided techniques in children aged 1 to 5 years with normal anatomy.