Selective Scalp Nerve Block: A Useful Technique With Tissue Expansion in Postburn Pediatric Alopecia

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BackgroundScalp defects can be reconstructed either with skin graft, local flaps, free flaps, or tissue expansion. Tissue expanders have been proved to be fruitful in the pediatric population. Scalp expansion has proved to be useful in the reconstruction of posttraumatic and postburn alopecic defects. Selective nerve block can be added for attenuation of sympathetic stimulation and decrease surgical stress in cranial surgeries. In this study, a comparison was done between using selective nerve block and without selective nerve block in both stages of tissue expansion procedure.Patients and MethodsThis study included 32 different children who underwent tissue expansions in the management of postburn alopecia. Pediatric patients presented with postburn alopecia of the scalp with mature scar were included in this work.ResultsPostoperative analgesics were less in children who had received scalp block, whereas it was shorter in patients who did not receive any scalp block. Meperidine consumption was much more less in patients who received selective scalp nerve block. Pain score was markedly decreased in children who had received selective scalp nerve block in the immediate postoperative period. Children who received scalp block showed marked attenuation in the surgical stress responses with minimal changes in heart rate and mean arterial blood pressure after skin incision.ConclusionsScalp nerve block is considered an excellent choice for postoperative pain control with less need for opioid analgesia.

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