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J Dent. 2009 Feb;37(2):93-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jdent.2008.10.005. Epub 2008 Dec 5.

The use of lidocaine as an anti-inflammatory substance: a systematic review.

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Department of Orthodontic and Pediatric Dentistry, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil.



To investigate existence of evidence that supports the therapeutical use of lidocaine as an anti-inflammatory substance.


A search on health sciences databases was performed, including only papers published in English until May 2007 which reported in vivo experimental studies that tested lidocaine as an anti-inflammatory substance and used morphological and/or biochemical analysis. The keywords used were: "lidocaine & inflammation", "lidocaine & neutrophils" and "lidocaine & prostaglandin". The search results were previous selected by title and abstract, and then articles were read and those that met inclusion criteria were carefully analyzed and classified.


Only 10 articles met the inclusion criteria, and were carefully read. They were ranked (A, B, and C) according to the level of evidence produced. Seven articles were classified as C, two classified as B, and one classified as A. Despite methodological differences, all of them, except for one, reported that lidocaine showed anti-inflammatory effects.


According to the reviewed literature, lidocaine has a potential as an anti-inflammatory agent. However, there is still a lack of well-designed studies to support its clinical use, and none of them evaluated its effects on a mucous epithelium.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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