Transversalis Fascia Plane Blocks for Analgesia Post-cesarean Delivery

  • End date
    Jun 30, 2021
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    University of Calgary
Updated on 1 February 2021
local anesthetic
nerve block
elective cesarean delivery


The aim of this study is to assess the efficacy of a bilateral TFP block in parturients undergoing cesarean delivery (CD) by evaluating postoperative opioid consumption and numeric rated pain scores in two groups (TFP block with saline (control) and TFP block with local anesthetic (treatment)). Women (American Society of Anesthesiologists physical status Class 1-3) at term gestation with singleton pregnancies undergoing an elective CD under spinal anesthesia at the South Health Campus will be consented to participate in the study. Patients will be randomly assigned using a computer-generated table of random numbers to two groups. Group allocations will be concealed. All patients will receive spinal anesthesia with spinal Morphine according to our institutional protocol. At the end of surgery, randomized patients will receive either ultrasound-guided bilateral TFP blocks with 0.25% bupivacaine with 2.5 mcg/ml epinephrine 40 ml total or maximum 2.5 mg/kg (Group 1) or 40 mL saline (Group 2) by 2 anesthesiologists experienced in performing this block.


Caesarean delivery (CD) is one of the most commonly performed surgical procedures with an estimated annual frequency of 27% in Alberta between 2007-2011. Poorly controlled postsurgical pain is associated with an increase in morbidity. Untreated or undertreated pain can lead to respiratory infections secondary to splinting and shallow breathing. Excessive pain also reduces and delays ambulation, which can lead to both an increase in the incidence of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and delay recovery and readiness for discharge. Poorly controlled pain may also lead to the development of chronic postsurgical pain. The optimal form of postoperative analgesia following CD is not known. Most postoperative analgesic protocols for CD, despite being multimodal in nature, rely heavily on opioid medications both orally and intrathecally for analgesia. These medications, however, are not without serious side effects such as nausea, vomiting, sedation, addiction or dependence, and respiratory depression as well as expression in breast milk which may put infants at risk of side effects as well. Thus, an effective alternative analgesic modality analgesia in these patients which produces both improved pain control and reduced side effects is desired. The TFP block represents a promising alternative, which may fulfill this role in complementing multimodal analgesia for patients undergoing CD and reducing opioid administration.

This project aims to elucidate information regarding alternative interventions for postoperative analgesia following CD. While the most common analgesic regimen of intrathecal and oral opioids, acetaminophen, and NSAIDS for postoperative analgesia is effective, it is not appropriate for all patients. For those who cannot receive intrathecal opioids (e.g. those with allergies to opioid medications, or those who are undergoing CD under general anesthetic), alternative analgesic modalities are important to provide adequate multimodal analgesia and minimize side effects of each of the analgesic medications. Additionally, this aforementioned common analgesic pathway may itself be further optimized through the addition of new analgesic techniques. The Transversalis Fascia Plane (TFP) block is a nerve block, which could potentially target nerves responsible for transmitting pain following CD, and represents a promising novel analgesic modality.

Condition Cesarean section, caesarean sections, caesarean delivery, caesarean section, cesarean delivery, caesarian sections, c-section
Treatment Saline, Bupivacaine-epinephrine, ultrasound-guided nerve block
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT03236324
SponsorUniversity of Calgary
Last Modified on1 February 2021


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Inclusion Criteria

Are you female?
Do you have Cesarean section?
Do you have any of these conditions: caesarean section or cesarean delivery or caesarean sections or caesarean delivery or Cesarean section or caesarian sections or c-section?
elective Cesarean delivery with spinal anesthesia at South Health Campus
term gestation with a singleton pregnancy
American Society of Anesthesiologists' (ASA) physical status Class 1-3

Exclusion Criteria

language barrier
body mass index (BMI) > 40 kg/m2
multiple gestations
chronic pain
opioid use
substance abuse
allergies to study medication
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