Regional anesthetic blocks, especially in-dwelling catheters, are infrequently used in neonates and infants. The following report describes a neonate with a gangrenous right upper extremity requiring multiple painful debridements over several weeks. A brachial plexus catheter was placed using ultrasound guidance, and a continuous infusion of a local anesthetic was used to provide postoperative pain control. After the initial procedures, bolus doses of a local anesthetic agent provided surgical anesthesia for dressing changes, thus obviating the need for multiple general anesthetics. This case demonstrates the potential efficacy of regional techniques to both treat pain and limit anesthetic exposures in neonates.
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