Circulation 36,825 • Volume 19, No. 1 • Spring 2004   Issue PDF

Spinal Anesthesia in the 21st Century?

John Brock-Utne, MD, PhD

To the Editor

I read with interest the letter by Dr. J. Antonio Aldrete in your Winter APSF Newsletter.1 He summarized some important aspects of potential problems with drugs and spinal anesthesia. Drugs can certainly cause damage, but one should not forget that unwanted material can also be introduced inadvertently into the subarachnoid space, e.g., a hair follicle.2

John Brock-Utne MD, PhD Stanford, CA


  1. Aldrete JA. Reader questions safety of spinal anesthesia (letter). APSF Newsletter 2003-04;18:60.
  2. Brock-Utne JG, Mankowitz E, Kallichurum S, Downing JW. Hair follicle introduced into the subarachnoid space during spinal anesthesia: a case report. Anesth Analg 1981;60:694-5.