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Lidocaine-prilocaine cream was more effective than placebo for pain during circumcision

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To determine the efficacy and safety of lidocaine-prilocaine cream for reducing pain during circumcision in newborns.


Randomised, double blind, placebo controlled trial with 24 hour follow up.


A teaching hospital in Ontario, Canada.


68 healthy white newborn babies (mean age 1.4 days) ≥ 37 weeks gestation and birth weight ≥ 2500 g undergoing circumcision. Infants with jaundice or methaemoglobinaemia, and those receiving methaemoglobin inducing, analgesic, or sedative drugs were excluded. 8 infants (12%) in the treatment group were excluded from the efficacy analysis because they were not treated under blind conditions.


The infants were assigned to receive 5% lidocaine-prilocaine cream (1:1 mixture of …

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  • Sources of funding: Astra Pharma Inc, Canada, and the Medical Research Council of Canada — Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association.

  • For article reprint: Dr G Koren, Department of Pediatrics, Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1X8, Canada. Fax +1 416 813 7562.