Local Anesthetic

A local anesthetic (LA) is a drug that causes reversible local anesthesia, generally for the aim of having a local analgesic effect, that is, inducing absence of pain sensation, although other local senses are often affected as well. Also, when it is used on specific nerve pathways (nerve block), paralysis (loss of muscle power) can be achieved as well.

Clinical local anesthetics belong to one of two classes: aminoamide and aminoester local anesthetics. Synthetic local anesthetics are structurally related to cocaine. They differ from cocaine mainly in that they have no abuse potential and do not act on the sympathoadrenergic system, i.e. they do not produce hypertension or local vasoconstriction, with the exception of Ropivacaine and Mepivacaine that do produce weak vasoconstriction.

Local anesthetics vary in their pharmacological properties and they are used in various techniques of local anesthesia such as:

  • Topical anesthesia (surface)
  • Infiltration
  • Plexus block
  • Epidural (extradural) block
  • Spinal anesthesia (subarachnoid block)

The local anesthetic lidocaine (lignocaine) is also used as a Class Ib antiarrhythmic drug.

Read more about Local AnestheticMechanism of Action, Techniques, Local Anesthetics in Clinical Use, Naturally Derived Local Anesthetics, History

Other articles related to "local anesthetic, local anesthetics":

Local Anesthetic - History
... It is believed that the local anesthetic effect of coca was also known and used for medical purposes ... Cocaine was isolated in 1860 and first used as a local anesthetic in 1884 ... less addictive substitute led to the development of the aminoester local anesthetics stovaine in 1903 and procaine in 1904 ...
Digesic - Toxicity
... In addition, both propoxyphene and its metabolite norpropoxyphene have local anesthetic effects at concentrations about 10 times those necessary for opioid effects ... Norpropoxyphene is a more potent local anesthetic than propoxyphene, and they are both more potent than lidocaine ... Local anesthetic activity appears to be responsible for the arrhythmias and cardiovascular depression seen in propoxyphene poisoning ...
Local Anesthetic Toxicity
... While generally safe, local anesthetic agents can be toxic if used in excessive doses or administered improperly ... Even when administered properly, patients may still experience unintended reactions to local anesthetics ... Repetitive (small) doses of local anesthetic to achieve an adequate level of anesthesia may lead to eventual administration of toxic doses ...
Anesthesia Of The Brachial Plexus - Complications
... or intravenous injection, which can lead to local anesthetic toxicity ... Cardiovascular effects of local anesthetic toxicity include slowing of the heart rate and impairment of its ability to pump blood through the circulatory system, which may lead to ... subarachnoid or epidural injection of local anesthetic, which can result in respiratory failure ...

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