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(Generic versions may still be available.)
Americaine Patient Information including How Should I Take
In this Article
- What is benzocaine topical (Americaine)?
- What are the possible side effects of benzocaine topical?
- What is the most important information I should know about benzocaine topical?
- What should I discuss with my health care provider before using benzocaine topical?
- How should I use benzocaine topical?
- What happens if I miss a dose?
- What happens if I overdose?
- What should I avoid while taking benzocaine topical?
- What other drugs will affect benzocaine topical?
- Where can I get more information?
What should I discuss with my health care provider before using benzocaine topical?
Do not use benzocaine topical if you have ever had methemoglobinemia in the past.
An overdose of numbing medications can cause fatal side effects if too much of the medicine is absorbed through your skin and into your blood. This is more likely to occur when using a numbing medicine without the advice of a medical doctor (such as during a cosmetic procedure like laser hair removal). Overdose symptoms may include uneven heartbeats, seizure (convulsions), coma, slowed breathing, or respiratory failure (breathing stops).
Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to take this medicine if you have:
- asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, or other breathing disorder;
- heart disease;
- a personal or family history of methemoglobinemia, or any genetic (inherited) enzyme deficiency; or
- if you smoke.
FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether benzocaine topical will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication..
It is not known whether benzocaine topical passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Do not use this medicine on a child younger than 2 years old without medical advice.
How should I use benzocaine topical?
Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Your body may absorb more of this medication if you use too much, if you apply it over large skin areas, or if you apply heat, bandages, or plastic wrap to treated skin areas. Skin that is cut or irritated may also absorb more topical medication than healthy skin.
Use the smallest amount of medicine needed to numb the skin or relieve pain. Do not use large amounts of benzocaine topical, or cover treated skin areas with a bandage or plastic wrap without medical advice. Be aware that many cosmetic procedures are performed without a medical doctor present.
This medication comes with instructions for safe and effective application. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
To treat minor skin conditions, apply a thin layer of benzocaine topical to the affected area up to 4 times per day. If using the spray, hold the container 6 to 12 inches away from the skin. Do not spray this medication onto your face. Spray it instead on your hands and then rub it onto the face, avoiding contact with your eyes.
To treat hemorrhoids, clean the area with soap and water before applying benzocaine topical. Apply the medication up to 6 times per day. If you are using the rectal suppository, try to empty your bowel and bladder before inserting the suppository. Remove the outer wrapper from the suppository before inserting it. Avoid handling the suppository too long or it will melt in your hands.
Do not use benzocaine topical to treat large skin areas or deep puncture wounds. Avoid using the medicine on skin that is raw or blistered, such as a severe burn or abrasion.
Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse within the first 7 days of using benzocaine topical. Also call your doctor if your symptoms had cleared up but then came back.
If you are treating a sore throat, call your doctor if the pain is severe or lasts longer than 2 days, especially if you also develop a fever, headache, skin rash, swelling, nausea, vomiting, cough, or breathing problems.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not freeze.
Additional Americaine Information
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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