This medication is used on the skin to stop itching and pain from certain skin conditions (e.g., scrapes, minor burns, eczema, insect bites) and to treat minor discomfort and itching caused by hemorrhoids and certain other problems of the genital/anal area (e.g., anal fissures, itching around the vagina/rectum). Some forms of this medication are also used to decrease discomfort or pain during certain medical procedures/exams (e.g., sigmoidoscopy, cystoscopy). Lidocaine is a local anesthetic that works by causing temporary numbness/loss of feeling in the skin and mucous membranes.
How to use lidocaine topical
If you are using the over-the-counter product to self-treat, read and follow all directions on the product package before using this medication. If you have any questions, consult your pharmacist. If your doctor has prescribed this medication, use it as directed.
Before use on the skin, clean and dry the affected area as directed. Apply a thin layer of medication to the affected area of skin, usually 2 to 3 times a day or as directed.
If you are using the spray, shake the canister well before using. While holding the canister 3-5 inches (8-13 centimeters) from the affected area, spray until wet. If the affected area is on the face, spray the medication onto your hand and apply to the face. Do not spray near your eyes, nose, or mouth.
If you are using the foam, shake the canister well before using. Spray the foam onto your hand and apply to the affected area.
Do not use on large areas of the body, cover the area with waterproof bandages or plastic, or apply heat unless directed to do so by your doctor. These may increase the risk of serious side effects.
Wash hands immediately after use unless you are treating an area on the hands. Avoid getting the product in eyes, nose, or ears. If the medication gets in these areas, rinse the area immediately with clean water.
The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Do not use more of this product, use it more often, or keep using it longer than directed. If there is an infection or sore in the area to be treated, do not use this medication without consulting your doctor first.
If your condition lasts or gets worse, or if you think you may have a serious medical problem, get medical help right away.
Temporary redness, stinging, and a little bit of swelling may occur at the application site. If these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor right away.
If your doctor has directed you to use this medication, remember that he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: slow/shallow breathing, seizures, pale/bluish/gray skin, unusual tiredness, shortness of breath, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: new/worsening rash, new or worsening itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice any other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.