Sedation and acute pain management: association/combinations of drugs

  • A. R. Wolf
Part of the Topics in Anaesthesia and Critical Care book series (TIACC)


In recent years there has been an increasing understanding that combinations of drugs, acting at different effector sites, can provide higher-quality analgesia or sedation than single drugs acting alone. This concept of co-analgesia has become routine practice in paediatric postoperative analgesia, and has proved to be highly effective. The combined action of the different drugs allows individual drug dosing to be reduced, thereby minimising side effects while maintaining adequate analgesia. Analgesic agents can also be combined in mixtures (such as in the epidural space) which can alter efficacy and duration of the technique, and this, too, has been a recent development in paediatric anaesthetic practice. However, all drugs have side effects, and each time a new drug is added, it brings with it an increasing possibility of drug interactions. Therefore, while drug combinations are undoubtedly beneficial, the clinician must have detailed knowledge of the pharmacology and interactions of the drugs used.


Analgesic Drug Sedative Drug Adequate Analgesia Acute Pain Management Caudal Anaesthesia 
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© Springer-Verlag Italia 1999

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  • A. R. Wolf

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