Thoracic epidural anaesthesia is selected usually to provide adequate postoperative analgesia; however with administration of local anaesthetics to epidural space selective sympatolysis ensues. The effects of this transient sympathectomy on cardivascular, respiratory and other systems deserve certainly some interest as it may influence postoperative morbidity or mortality. Thoracic epidural anaesthesia has succesfully been used in cardiac, thoracic and major abdominal surgery. It provides dynamic analgesia, rapid mobilization, blunted stress response, early extubation with reduced pulmonary complications and also rapid recovery of bowel function. In cardiac surgery where thoracic sympathetic blockade is expected to be most useful, there is no difference in morbidity and mortality. Despite the superior quality of pain control, the beneficial aspect of thoracic epidural anaesthesia is not reflected on outcome in meta-analysis. Recent papers has still demonstrated positive effects on each system. So thoracic epidural anaesthesia is increasingly used and it seems that it will be discussed more in near future.