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Drugs & Medications

ethyl chloride topical

Uses

This medication is used to prevent pain caused by injections and minor surgical procedures. It is also used for the temporary relief of minor sports injuries. Ethyl chloride also helps to relieve deep muscle pain when used with muscle stretching techniques. Ethyl chloride is a cooling substance that is applied to the skin to numb it.

How to use ethyl chloride topical

This medication is for use on the skin only. It is applied by a healthcare professional. Do not apply to broken skin or mucous membranes (e.g., inside the nose or mouth). Do not spray into the eyes. Do not inhale the spray.

This medication is flammable. Do not use near an open flame or near electrical equipment that can spark a fire.

Before applying ethyl chloride to injection and local surgical sites, your healthcare professional will swab the treatment area with an antiseptic. Petroleum jelly may be applied to protect surrounding areas around the surgical site. The ethyl chloride container should be positioned 3-9 inches (8-23 centimeters) away from the skin. If using ethyl chloride in a bottle, it should be held upside down and sprayed onto the area for 3-7 seconds. If using ethyl chloride in an aerosol can, it should be held upright and sprayed onto the area for 4-10 seconds. Your healthcare professional will spray just until the skin starts to turn white, stopping before the skin frosts. The procedure will then be quickly performed because the numbing effect of ethyl chloride only lasts for a few seconds to a minute.

For the relief of deep muscle pain, the healthcare professional will hold the container 12-18 inches (30-46 centimeters) away from the muscle, then spray in a sweeping motion at the rate of 4 inches (10.2 centimeters) per second until the entire muscle is covered from the trigger point to the area of pain. The muscle will be slowly stretched during this process until full motion is restored and pain is relieved.

Side Effects

Side effects are not common with this medication.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because 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.

Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: lasting changes in skin color, pain as skin is thawing, infection at the application site, delayed wound healing.

Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur (with long-term exposure): change in the amount of urine, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine, stomach/abdominal pain, persistent nausea/vomiting, unusual tiredness.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction may include: rash, 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 other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Precautions

Before using ethyl chloride, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history.

This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.

Interactions

Your healthcare professionals (e.g., doctor or pharmacist) may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for it. Do not start, stop or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use.

Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. This medication may be harmful if inhaled. If accidentally inhaled, you may experience symptoms such as drowsiness, slowed breathing, slow heartbeat.

Notes

Not applicable.

Missed Dose

Not applicable.

Storage

Contents are under pressure. Store in a cool place at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C). Do not store above 122 degrees F (50 degrees C). Do not use near an open flame, electrical equipment that may ignite a fire, or hot surfaces. Do not store on or near high-frequency ultrasound equipment. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Information last revised March 2013. Copyright(c) 2013 First Databank, Inc.

Images

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Selected from data included with permission and copyrighted by First Databank, Inc. This copyrighted material has been downloaded from a licensed data provider and is not for distribution, expect as may be authorized by the applicable terms of use.

CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.

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