Introduction: Given the high prevalence of upper extremity fractures and increasing need to perform painless reduction in the emergency departments, the use of analgesic methods with fewer complications and more satisfaction appears to be essential. The aim of this study is comparison the nerve stimulator guided axillary block (NSAB) with intravenous sedation in induction of analgesia for painless reduction of distal radius fractures. Methods: In the present randomized clinical trial, 60 patients (18-70 years of age) suffered from distal radius fractures, were divided into two equal groups. One group received axillary nerve block by nerve stimulator guidance and the other procedural sedation and analgesia (PSA) using midazolam/fentanyl. Onset of analgesia, duration of analgesic effect, total procedure time and pain scores were recorded using visual analogue scale (VAS) and the outcomes were compared. Chi-squared and student t test were performed to evaluate differences between two groups. Results: Sixty patients were randomly divided into two groups (83.3% male). The mean age of patients was 31 ±0.7 years. While the onset of analgesia was significantly longer in the NSAB group, the mean total time of procedure was shorter than PSA (p<0.001). The NSAB group needed a shorter post-operative observation time (P<0.001). Both groups experienced equal pain relief before, during and after procedure (p>0.05). Conclusion: It seems that shorter post-operative monitoring time and consequently lesser total time of procedure, make nerve stimulator guided axillary block as an appropriate alternative for procedural sedation and analgesia in painless reduction of distal radius fractures in emergency department.
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