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Efficacy of a Buffered 4% Lidocaine Formulation for Incision and Drainage: A Prospective, Randomized, Double-blind Study

Published:August 04, 2015DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.joen.2015.06.017

      Abstract

      Introduction

      Incision and drainage of symptomatic emergency patients with facial swelling is painful even after local anesthetics are administered. The purpose of this prospective, randomized, double-blind study was to compare the pain of infiltration and the pain of an incision and drainage procedure of a buffered versus a nonbuffered 4% lidocaine formulation in symptomatic emergency patients presenting with a diagnosis of pulpal necrosis, associated periapical area, and an acute clinical swelling.

      Methods

      Eighty-eight emergency patients were randomly divided into 2 groups to receive 2 intraoral infiltration injections (mesial and distal to the swelling) of either 4% lidocaine with 1:100,000 epinephrine buffered with 0.18 mL 8.4% sodium bicarbonate using the Onpharma (Los Gatos, CA) buffering system or 4% lidocaine with 1:100,000 epinephrine. Subjects rated the pain of needle insertion, needle placement, and solution deposition for each injection using a 170-mm visual analog scale. An incision and drainage procedure was performed, and subjects rated the pain of incision, drainage, and dissection on a 170-mm visual analog scale.

      Results

      No significant differences between the buffered and nonbuffered 4% lidocaine formulations were found for needle insertion, placement, and solution deposition of the infiltration injections or for the treatment phases of incision, drainage, and dissection.

      Conclusions

      Buffering a 4% lidocaine formulation did not significantly decrease the pain of infiltrations or significantly decrease the pain of the incision and drainage procedure when compared with a nonbuffered 4% lidocaine formulation in symptomatic patients with a diagnosis of pulpal necrosis and associated acute swelling.

      Key Words

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