MED REVIEW MONDAY
Lidocaine (aka xylocaine) is a common drug that has two main uses: a local anesthetic and an anti-arrythmic.
As an anesthetic it has a rapid onset and an intermediate duration; It is commonly used for dental surgeries, inflammation, endoscopies, before intubations or IV insertions.
As an anti-arrythmic drug it is used to treat ventricular arrhythmias (such as PVCs), for digitalis poisoning or during a cardiac catherization.
Other uses include seizures, as an anti-tussive or to treat jellyfish stings.
Some side effects include tinnitus (a ringing in the ear) and paraesthesia (pins and needles), and it is contradicted in patients with pacemakers.
It comes in all different forms: topical creams, skin patch, nasal spray, IV injection, nebulizer, oral injection…
Fun fact: Cocaine dealers often mix lidocaine in their product to fool customers. Since lidocaine numbs on contact the diluted cocaine seems even stronger.