Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Lidocaine and our Neurons

All my treatments are going to be starting back up in the next couple of weeks and I will have more to update you all on then!

Until next week though, I have an interesting fact to share with you, that I learnt today about lidocaine ointment.

My description below may not be entirely descriptive, but it's the way it was described to me:
Lidocaine acts as an anesthetic by blocking sodium channels in our neurons (in our axons of our neurons). But for the drug to actually work, you must depolarise the neuron first! Well how do you do that? After applying the lidocaine, you must actually provoke the pain you're trying to numb. By causing this pain, the neurons depolarise, the drug moves in and blocks the sodium channels, and we get the numbing sensation that blocks our pain.

I'm wondering if this is partly why I never found a lot of relief from the lidocaine (or thought I didn't find relief). I expected it to prevent all my pain before actually causing the pain. The moment I felt pain, I stopped any penetration causing it and came to the conclusion that it wasn't working.

I may have to give it another try and remember this little fact. Quickly cause a but of pain after applying it, then the numbing/pain blocking will take place.

Something quick and extra I found - Wikipedia definition of how lidocaine acts as anaesthesia: Lidocaine alters signal conduction in neurons by blocking the fast voltage gated sodium (Na+) channels in the neuronal cell membrane that are responsible for signal propagation.[28] With sufficient blockage the membrane of the postsynaptic neuron will not depolarize and will thus fail to transmit an action potential. This creates the anaesthetic effect by not merely preventing pain signals from propagating to the brain but by stopping them before they begin. Careful titration allows for a high degree of selectivity in the blockage of sensory neurons, whereas higher concentrations will also affect other modalities of neuron signaling.

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