Rapid Onset of Cutaneous Anesthesia with EMLA Cream after Pretreatment with a New Ultrasound-Emitting Device

Nathaniel P. Katz, David E. Shapiro, Timothy E. Herrmann, Joseph Kost, Linda M. Custer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations

Abstract

In this randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, crossover trial of 42 human subjects, we examined the speed of onset of cutaneous anesthesia by eutectic mixture of local anesthetics (EMLA) cream after brief (approximately 10-s) pretreatment of the underlying skin with low-frequency (55 kHz) ultrasound. Four treatments were compared: ultrasound pretreatment followed by application of 1 g EMLA or placebo cream for 5 min, 10 min, 15 min, and 60 min without ultrasound pretreatment as positive control. Pain was tested by pricks with a 20 g needle. Pain scores and patient preference for EMLA or placebo cream were measured at each time point. Based on both pain scores and patient preference, cutaneous anesthesia was achieved in the EMLA groups as compared with placebo at all time points. After ultrasound pretreatment and then 5, 10, or 15 min after EMLA cream application, pain scores and overall preference were statistically indistinguishable from EMLA cream application for 60 min (without ultrasound pretreatment). There were no significant adverse effects. Low-frequency ultrasound pretreatment appears to be safe and effective in producing rapid onset of EMLA cream in this model, with results as early as 5 min.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-376
Number of pages6
JournalAnesthesia and Analgesia
Volume98
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2004
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Rapid Onset of Cutaneous Anesthesia with EMLA Cream after Pretreatment with a New Ultrasound-Emitting Device'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this