Lidocaine Hydrochloride and Dextrose (Page 2 of 4)

PRECAUTIONS

General

The safety and effectiveness of lidocaine depend on proper dosage, correct technique, adequate precautions, and readiness for emergencies. Standard textbooks should be consulted for specific techniques and precautions for spinal anesthetic procedures. Resuscitative equipment, oxygen and other resuscitative drugs should be available for immediate use (see WARNINGS and ADVERSE REACTIONS). The lowest dosage that results in effective anesthesia should be used to avoid high plasma levels and serious adverse effects. Repeated doses of lidocaine may cause significant increases in blood levels with each repeated dose because of slow accumulation of the drug or its metabolites. Tolerance to elevated blood levels varies with the physical condition of the patient. Debilitated, elderly patients, acutely ill patients and children should be given reduced doses commensurate with their age and physical status. Lidocaine should also be used with caution in patients with severe shock or heart block.

Neurologic deficits have been reported with the use of small bore needles and microcatheters for spinal anesthesia. It has been postulated, based on in vitro models, that these deficits were due to pooling and non-uniform distribution of concentrated local anesthesia within the subarachnoid space.1 Animal studies suggest mixing of 5% lidocaine hydrochloride with an equal volume of CSF or preservative-free 0.9% saline solution may reduce the risk of nerve injury due to pooling of concentrated local anesthetic2 (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION).

The following conditions may preclude the use of spinal anesthesia, depending upon the physician’s ability to deal with the complications or complaints that may occur:

  1. Pre-existing diseases of the CNS such as those attributable to poliomyelitis, pernicious anemia, paralysis from nerve injuries, and syphilis.
  2. Disturbance in blood morphology and/or anticoagulant therapy. In these conditions, trauma to a blood vessel during needle puncture may result in uncontrollable hemorrhage into the epidural or subarachnoid space. Also profuse hemorrhage into the soft tissue may occur.
  3. Extremes of age.
  4. Chronic backache and preoperative headache.
  5. Hypotension and hypertension.
  6. Arthritis or spinal deformity.
  7. Technical problems (persistent paresthesias, persistent bloody tap).
  8. Psychotic or uncooperative patients.

CONSULT STANDARD TEXTBOOKS FOR SPECIFIC TECHNIQUES AND PRECAUTIONS FOR SPINAL ANESTHETIC PROCEDURES.

Careful and constant monitoring of cardiovascular and respiratory (adequacy of ventilation) vital signs and the patient’s state of consciousness should be accomplished after each local anesthetic injection. It should be kept in mind at such times that restlessness, anxiety, tinnitus, dizziness, blurred vision, tremors, depression or drowsiness may be early warning signs of CNS toxicity.

Since amide-type local anesthetics are metabolized by the liver, lidocaine should be used with caution in patients with hepatic disease. Patients with severe hepatic disease, because of their inability to metabolize local anesthetic normally, are a greater risk of developing toxic plasma concentrations. Lidocaine should also be used with caution in patients with impaired cardiovascular function since they may be less able to compensate for functional changes associated with the prolongation of A-V conduction produced by these drugs.

Many drugs used during the conduct of anesthesia are considered potential triggering agents for familial malignant hyperthermia. Since it is not known whether amide-type local anesthetics may trigger this reaction and since the need for supplemental general anesthesia cannot be predicted in advance, it is suggested that a standard protocol for management should be available. Early unexplained signs of tachycardia, tachypnea, labile blood pressure and metabolic acidosis may precede temperature elevation. Successful outcome is dependent on early diagnosis, prompt discontinuance of the suspect triggering agent(s) and institution of treatment including oxygen therapy, indicated supportive measures and dantrolene (consult dantrolene sodium intravenous package insert before using).

Lidocaine should be used with caution in persons with known drug sensitivities. Patients allergic to para-aminobenzoic acid derivatives (procaine, tetracaine, benzocaine, etc.) have not shown cross sensitivity to lidocaine.

Information for Patients

Inform patients that use of local anesthetics may cause methemoglobinemia, a serious condition that must be treated promptly. Advise patients or caregivers to seek immediate medical attention if they or someone in their care experience the following signs or symptoms: pale, gray, or blue colored skin (cyanosis); headache; rapid heart rate; shortness of breath; lightheadedness; or fatigue.

When appropriate, patients should be informed in advance that they may experience temporary loss of sensation and motor activity, usually in the lower half of the body, following proper administration of spinal anesthesia.

Clinically significant drug interactions

The administration of local anesthetic solutions containing epinephrine or norepinephrine to patients receiving monoamine oxidase inhibitors, tricyclic antidepressants or phenothiazines may produce severe, prolonged hypotension or hypertension. Concurrent use of these agents should generally be avoided. In situations when concurrent therapy is necessary, careful patient monitoring is essential.

Concurrent administration of vasopressor drugs (for the treatment of hypotension related to spinal blocks) and ergot-type oxytocic drugs may cause severe, persistent hypertension or cerebrovascular accidents.

Patients who are administered local anesthetics are at increased risk of developing methemoglobinemia when concurrently exposed to the following drugs, which could include other local anesthetics:

Examples of Drugs Associated with Methemoglobinemia:

Class Examples
Nitrates/Nitrites nitric oxide, nitroglycerin, nitroprusside, nitrous oxide
Local anesthetics articaine, benzocaine, bupivacaine, lidocaine, mepivacaine, prilocaine, procaine, ropivacaine, tetracaine
Antineoplastic Agents cyclophosphamide, flutamide, hydroxyurea, ifosfamide, rasburicase
Antibiotics dapsone, nitrofurantoin, para-aminosalicylic acid, sulfonamides
Antimalarials chloroquine, primaquine
Anticonvulsants phenobarbital, phenytoin, sodium valproate
Other drugs acetaminophen, metoclopramide, quinine, sulfasalazine

Carcinogenesis, mutagenesis, impairment of fertility

Studies of lidocaine in animals to evaluate the carcinogenic and mutagenic potential or the effect on fertility have not been conducted.

Use in Pregnancy

Teratogenic Effects

Reproduction studies have been performed in rats at doses up to 6.6 times the human dose and have revealed no evidence of harm to the fetus caused by lidocaine. There are, however, no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response. General consideration should be given to this fact before administering lidocaine to women of childbearing potential, especially during early pregnancy when maximum organogenesis takes place.

Labor and delivery

Maternal hypotension has resulted from regional anesthesia. Local anesthetics produce vasodilation by blocking sympathetic nerves. Elevating the patient’s legs and positioning her on her left side will help prevent decreases in blood pressure. The fetal heart rate also should be monitored continuously, and electronic fetal monitoring is highly advisable.

Spinal anesthesia may alter the forces of parturition through changes in uterine contractility or maternal expulsive efforts. However, spinal anesthesia has also been reported to prolong the second stage of labor by removing the parturient’s reflex urge to bear down or by interfering with motor function. The use of obstetrical anesthesia may increase the need for forceps assistance.

Nursing mothers

It is not known whether this drug is excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk, caution should be exercised when lidocaine is administered to a nursing woman.

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