Clonidine

This a-adrenoreceptor agonist is available in topical, oral, and injectable formulations. The epidural and intrathecal use of clonidine is firmly established in postoperative pain management where its use is associated with enhanced analgesia and decreased opioid requirements in the postoperative phase. Isolated studies also suggest other analgesic uses for this medication. When used orally it can cause sedation, which may be of value when used as a premedicant drug, and reduce postoperative pain. When added to local anesthetics and infiltrated into postoperative wounds, the addition of the clonidine can significantly prolong the duration of effect of the local anesthetic. This effect can be achieved with doses far below that which would be needed to cause hypotension or sedation.

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