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Spinal Anesthesia

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Updated February 03, 2010

regional-epidural anesthesia

Epidural Anesthesia Image

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Definition: Spinal anesthesia is a type of regional anesthesia which means a specific area of the body is numbed without making the patient sleep. In this case, anesthesia medication is injected into an area just outside of the spine. Contrary to popular belief, the anesthesia is not injected directly into the spine.

Spinal anesthesia is best used in situations where numbness is required, but there is no need to render the patient unconscious. Childbirth is one of the most common surgeries where spinal anesthesia is used. During labor, this type of anesthesia is commonly referred to as an "epidural".

Also Known As: anesthesia, epidural, anaesthesia, spinal anesthetic, spinal anaesthesia,
Alternate Spellings: spinal anaesthesia,
Examples:
The woman was given spinal anesthesia to minimize her pain during labor.
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