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Topical anaesthesia use in the management of children's lacerations, a postal survey
  1. Stephen Bush
  1. Specialist Registrar in Accident and Emergency, Accident and Emergency Department, St James's University Hospital, Leeds LS9 7TF

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    Editor,—The suturing of lacerations of children is often difficult. Infiltration with 1% plain lignocaine (lidocaine) is commonly used to make the suturing more comfortable. This infiltration may cause pain and render the child uncooperative for the rest of the procedure.

    Topical anaesthesia (TA) has been described since 1980.1 The agent commonly used is a mixture of 0.5% tetracaine, 0.05% adrenaline (epinephrine) and 11.8% cocaine (TAC). This method has a similar efficacy to infiltration but is less painful to apply2, 3 and is used widely in the United States.

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