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  • Author: Mirjana Shosholcheva x
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Aim: To present a chronological overview of the most important events and actors that have marked the history of anaesthesiology and intensive treatment in R. Macedonia since its beginnings in the 1950s.

Method: Retrospective study based on archive materials, published literature and jubilee publications, as well as the memories of individuals who have worked in the field of anaesthesiology in the past period.

Results: Between the two World Wars the first anaesthesia procedures were handled by surgeons. After World War II, the development of anaesthesia in R. Macedonia could be divided into two periods: before 1965 and after 1965. Before 1965 anaesthesia was mainly given by technicians trained on courses, and after this year anaesthesiology was taken over by anaesthesiologists who had specialized at the Faculty of Medicine in Skopje. In 1985 the number of anaesthesiologists was 100, and today it exceeds 250. The most important figures in the history of Macedonian anaesthesiology are: Dr. Risto Ivanovski, who worked from 1954-78, and Prof. Dr. Vladimir Andonov, who worked as an anaesthesiologist from 1965-99. Both of them are doyens who contributed a lot to the development of the anaesthesiology service and education of anaesthesiologists in R. Macedonia. Intensive treatment had started in 1955, but in real terms it has been performed since 1966, when artificial ventilators were introduced. The modern Intensive Care Department was opened at the Surgical Clinic in 1995 and it was followed in other hospitals in the state. The Department of Anaesthesiology has existed since 1975, and it has made a huge contribution to the education of professionals who apply modern principles in emergency medicine and intensive care.

Conclusion: From modest beginnings in the 1950s, anaesthesiology today in R. Macedonia has developed well organized activity that successfully follow the trends of modern medicine in the field of anesthesiology, resuscitation, intensive care and pain treatment.


Patients undergoing mechanical ventilation in intensive care units (ICUs) may develop ventilator-induced lung injury (VILI). Beside the high tidal volume (Vt) and plateau pressure (Pplat), hyperoxia is supposed to precipitate lung injury. Oxygen toxicity is presumed to occur at levels of fraction of inspired oxygen (FiO2) exceeding 0.40. The exposure time to hyperoxia is certainly very important and patients who spend extended time on mechanical ventilation (MV) are probably more exposed to severe hyperoxic acute lung injury (HALI). Together, hyperoxia and biotrauma (release of cytokines) have a synergistic effect and can induce VILI. In the clinical practice, the reduction of FiO2 to safe levels through the appropriate use of the positive end expiratory pressure (PEEP) and the alignment of mean airway pressure is an appropriate goal. The strategy for lung protective ventilation must include setting up FiO2 to a safe level that is accomplished by using PaO2/FiO2 ratio with a lower limit of FiO2 to achieve acceptable levels of PaO2, which will be safe for the patient without local (lungs) or systemic inflammatory response. The protocol from the ARDS-net study is used for ventilator setup and adjustment. Cytokines (IL-1, IL-6, TNFα and MIP-2) that are involved in the inflammatory response are determined in order to help the therapeutic approach in counteracting HALI. Computed tomography findings reflect the pathological phases of the diffuse alveolar damage. At least preferably the lowest level of FiO2 should be used in order to provide full lung protection against the damage induced by MV.


Opioid free anesthesia (OFA) is deffined as anaesthesiological technique where opioids are not used in the intraoperative period (systemic, neuroaxial or intracavitary). Anaphylaxis caused by opioids (fentanyl) is very rare, and the reaction is presented with hypotension and urticaria. When we have proven allergy to fentanyl, patients’ refusal of placing epidural catheter and refusal of receiving bilateral ultrasound guided transversus abdominis plane block (USG TAPB), we must think of using multimodal nonopioide analgesia. The concept of multimodal balanced analgesia is consisted of giving different analgesic drugs in purpose to change the pathophysiological process which is included in nociception, in way to receive more effective intraoperative analgesia with less adverse effects. This is a case report of a 60-year-old male patient scheduled for laparotomic hemicolectomy, who previously had proven allergy to fentanyl. We have decided to give him an opioid free anaesthesia. Before the induction to anaesthesia, the patient would receive dexamethasone (dexasone) 0.1 mg/kg and paracetamol 1 gr intravenously. The patient was induced into general endotracheal anesthesia according to a standardized protocol, with midazolam 0.04 mg/kg, lidocaine hydrochloride 1 mg/kg, propofol 2 mg/kg and rocuronium bromide 0.6 mg/kg. Anaesthesia was maintained by using sevoflurane MAC 1 in order to maintain mean arterial pressure (MAP) with a value of +/- 20% of the original value. After tracheal intubation, the patient had received ketamine hydrochloride 0.5 mg/kg (or 50 mg ketamine) in bolus intravenously and a continuous intravenous infusion with lidocaine hydrochloride (lidocaine) 2 mg/kg/hr and magnesium sulfate (MgSO4) 1,5 gr/hr. At the end of surgery the continuous intravenous infusion with lidocaine and magnesium sulfate was stopped while the abdominal wall was closed and 2.5 g of metamizole (novalgetol) was given intravenously. VAS score 2 hours after surgery was 6/10 and 1 gr of paracetamol was given and the patient was transferred to the Department. Over the next 3 days, the patient had a VAS score of 4-6/10 and only received paracetamol 3x1g and novalgetol 3x1 gr daily, every four hours.


Introduction: Epidural analgesia is considered a gold standard in obstetric anaesthesia and analgesia. However, in situation when it is contraindicated, unwanted by the patient or simply unavailable, remifentanil can be an excellent alternative. The goal of our study is to analyse the side effects of intravenous patient-controlled analgesia (IV PCA) with remifentanil compared with epidural analgesia during delivery.

Material and methods: This study included 155 pregnant women in term for birth, divided into 2 groups: a remifentanil group (RG), and an epidural group (EG). Patients in the RG received intravenous PCA with remifentanil, while patients in the ЕG received epidural analgesia with programmed intermittent bolus dosing. Our primary outcome was maternal safety; the secondary outcome was neonatal safety.

Results: The results present a significantly lower SaO2 value of the parturients in the RG (96.95 ± 1.4 vs 98.22 ± 0.6), and a significantly higher respiratory rate per minute in the EG at all time points after the onset of analgesia (20.85 ± 1.4 vs 18.67 ± 0.9). There was more frequent sedation, nausea and vomiting in the RG, while in the EG there was a more elevated temperature, itching and irregularities in the CTG record. Regarding the newborn, there was no significant difference between the two groups in the Apgar scores, pH, pCO2, pO2, and bicarbonate, while there was a significantly lower value of the base excess in the RG group.

Conclusion: PCA with remifentanil is safe for the mother, foetus and the newborn, with minimal side effects. Continuous respiratory monitoring, oxygen supply and following of all consensus recommendations are mandatory.


Introduction and objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate changes in serum electrolytes during Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) and to evaluate the degree of correlation of hyponatremia and the factors that affect the incidence of TURP syndrome and to show the impact of the duration of the procedure on the severity of hyponatremia due to absorption of irrigation fluid in the systemic circulation.

Materials and Methods: This study examined 60 male patients planned for elective TURP. The level of serum electrolytes are determined by taking venous blood samples preoperatively and Postoperatively and when the duration of the operation was longer than 60 minutes, the level of serum electrolytes was determined intraoperative. The amount of used irrigation fluid, the weight of resection prostate, and duration of surgery, were also followed. Patients were divided in two groups according to the length of the surgical procedure: Group 1 (30- 60 min) and Group 2 (> 60 min).

Results: Statistically significant reduction of serum sodium and the elevation of the potassium level in serum observed postoperatively and was directly proportional to the volume of of the used irrigation fluid, the duration of the procedure and volume of the resected prostate.

Conclusions: To evaluate changes in serum electrolyte during TURP is simple and economical method for the indirect estimation of irrigation fluid absorption into the systemic circulation during TURP and opportunity for early identification of TURP syndrome


Introduction: Patients undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy do experience postoperative pain, especially in the abdomen. Postoperative pain management remains a major challenge after laparoscopic procedures. Administration of intraperitoneal local anesthetic (IPLA) after surgery is used as a method of reducing postoperative pain. In this study, we evaluated the effect of intraperitoneal infiltration of local anesthetic (bupivacaine) for pain relief after laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

Material and methods: In this prospective, controlled, and randomized study were included 50 patients aged 25-60 years (35 female and 15 male), scheduled to laparoscopic cholecystectomy with ASA classification 1 and 2. Patients were classified randomly into two groups: group A, which included 25 patients who received intraperitoneal instillation of bupivacaine 0.5% 20 ml; and group B, which included 25 patients who didn’t receive any intraperitoneal instillation. Postoperative pain was recorded using the visual analogue scale (VAS) for 24 hours after laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

Results: There was no significant difference with respect to age, weight, and sex; duration of surgery; and anesthesia time. VAS scores at different time intervals were statistically significantly lower at all times in group A compared to group B. There were statistically significant differences in VAS scores between group A and group B at all postoperative time points - 1hr,4 hr,8 hr,12hr and 24hr (p < 0.00001).

Conclusion: Intraperitoneal instillation of bupivacaine provides good analgesia in the postoperative period after laparoscopic cholecystectomy.


Background: Ultrasound guided rectus sheath block can block the ventral rami of the 7th to 12th thoracolumbar nerves by injection of local anesthetic into the space between the rectus muscle and posterior rectus sheath. The aim of this randomized double-blind study was to evaluate the analgesic effect of the bilateral ultrasound guided rectus sheath block as supplement of general anesthesia on patents undergoing elective umbilical hernia repair.

Methods: After the hospital ethics committee approval, 60 (ASA I–II) adult patients scheduled for umbilical hernia repair were included in this study. The group I (n=30) patents received only general anesthesia. In the group II (n = 30) patents after induction of general anesthesia received a bilateral ultrasound guided rectus sheath block with 40 ml of 0.25% bupivacaine. In this study we assessed demographic and clinical characteristics, pain score - VAS at rest at 2, 4, 6, 12 and 24 hours after operation and total analgesic consumption of morphine dose over 24-hours.

Results: There were statistically significant differences in VAS scores between the groups I and II at all postoperative time points - 2hr, 4 hr, 6 hr, 12 hr and 24 hr. (P < 0.00001). The cumulative 24 hours morphine consumption after the operation was significantly lower in the group II (mean = 3.73 ± 1. 41) than the group I (mean = 8.76 ± 2.41). This difference was statistically significant (p = 0.00076).

Conclusion: The ultrasound guided rectus sheath block used for umbilical hernia repair could reduce postoperative pain scores and the amount of morphine consumption in 24 hours postoperative period.


Background: The transverses abdominals plane block (TAP) is a regional anesthesia technique that provided analgesia to the parietal peritoneum, skin and muscles of the anterior abdominal wall. The aim of this randomized double-blind study was to evaluate postoperative analgesia on patients undergoing open inguinal hernia repair under general anesthesia (GA), (GA + TAP) block preformed with ropivacaine and (GA + TAP-D) block preformed with ropivacaine and 4 mg dexamethasone.

Methods: 90 (ASA I-II) adult patients for unilateral open inguinal hernia repair were included in this study. In group I (n = 30) patents received only general anesthesia (GA). Patients in group II (n = 30) received GA and unilateral TAP block with 25 ml of 0.5% ropivacaine and the patients in group III (n = 30) received GA and unilateral TAP-D block with 25 ml of 0.5% ropivacaine + 4 mg Dexamethadsone. In this study we assessed the pain score - VAS at rest at 2, 4, 6, 12 and 24 hours after the operation and the total analgesic consumption of morphine over 24 hours.

Results: There were statistically significant differences in the VAS scores between group I, group II and group III at all postoperative time points - 2hr, 4hr, 6hr, 12hr and 24hr. (p < 0.00001). The cumulative 24 hours morphine consumption after the operation was significantly lower in group III (5.53 1.21 mg) than in group II (6.16 2.41 mg) and group I (9.26 2.41 mg). This difference is statistically significant (p < 0.00001).

Conclusion: Concerning the inguinal hernia repair we found better postoperative pain scores and 24 hours reduction of the morphine consumption in group III (GA and TAP-D block) compared with group I (GA) and group II (GA + TAP block).


Introduction: Surgical stress response, results in elevated levels of anti-insulin hormones and reduced insulin secretion. This hormonal state may be detrimental for surgical patients due to the presence of insulin resistance and hyperglycemia. Additionally, pre-operative fasting favors this conditions. The aim of this study is to analyze the impact of pre-operative caloric load, with 440kJ from amino acid infusions on the levels of glucose, cortisol and insulin resistance in surgical patients.

Material and Methods: The study included 20 female patients scheduled for mastectomy, aged 30-60 years without diabetes and BMI < 30 m2, divided into two groups. The study group A, the evening before the surgery, received 1000 ml amino acid infusions, while the control group B didn′t receive any infusion. In both groups glucose, C-peptide and cortisol levels were determinate preoperatively and postoperatively. From the obtained C-peptide and glucose values, with the help of computer model (HOMA2*), the insulin resistance (IR), functionality of beta cells (BETA) and insulin sensitivity (IS) were calculated.

Results: Postoperative values of insulin resistance (0.94 ± 0.12 vs 1.13 ± 0.2; p = 0.02) and glucose (4.79 ± 0.5 vs 5.77 ± 0.6; p = 0.002) were lower in the study group compared to control group. Postoperative cortisol levels in both groups were higher than the preoperative, but no significant difference was found. The study group showed higher values for BETA and IS. Percentage changes between the groups were significant for all parameters.

Conclusion: Pre-operative caloric load (amino acids) reduces the level of insulin resistance and glucose in the presence of elevated cortisol levels.