Background: Despite the relative safety of cesarean section (CS), increasing CS rate is a cause for concern to obstetricians and anesthetists because of the attendant increased health risk one of which is the risk of anesthesia. The choice of anesthesia for cesarean section depends on the indication for the surgery, the urgency of intervention required, the maternal and/or fetal status, and the patient’s desires. Despite the paradigm shift toward spinal anesthesia, general anesthesia is still commonly administered in our facility for some specific indications.
Objective: This study was aimed to evaluate the maternal and neonatal outcomes in patients who had emergency CS under spinal anesthesia compared with those who had general anesthesia.
Materials and Methods: This was a retrospective study comparing the obstetric outcome of patients who had emergency CS under spinal anesthesia compared with those who had the surgery under general anesthesia. Data analysis was done using statistical Epi Info version 7.2.1.
Results: The most common indication for surgery in the spinal group was cephalopelvic disproportion while that for the general anesthesia group was antepartum hemorrhage/placenta previa. Patients who had spinal anesthesia had less intraoperative blood loss compared with those who had general anesthesia (814 ± 124 vs. 842 ± 324; P = 0.0007). There was a significant difference in the intraoperative blood loss >1000 ml among women who had spinal anesthesia relative to women who had general anesthesia (odds ratio [OR]: 0.6832, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.3390–0.9779; P = 0.0005). Spinal anesthesia was associated with a reduced risk of having a 1stâ€‘min Apgar score <7 (OR: 0.6096, 95% CI: 0.4066–0.9140; P = 0.016). There was no significant difference in the 5thâ€‘min Apgar score in both groups. There was also no significant difference in the number of neonates admitted into the Intensive Care Units. The maternal and perinatal mortality was not different in both groups.
Conclusion: Spinal anesthesia was associated with reduced risk of blood loss and reduced risk of low Apgar score in the 1st min. There was no difference in the 5thâ€‘min Apgar score and maternal and neonatal mortality.
Keywords: Emergency cesarean section, general anesthesia, spinal anesthesia.
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