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Benzocaine

From Academic Kids

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Benzocaine.png
Benzocaine chemical structure


Benzocaine

Ethyl 4-aminobenzoate
IUPAC chemical name
CAS number
94-09-7
ATC code
C05AD03, D04AB04, N01BA05, R02AD01
Chemical formula C9H11NO2
Molecular weight 165.191
Bioavailability  ?
Metabolism  ?
Elimination half-life  ?
Excretion  ?
Pregnancy category  ?
Legal status  ?
Routes of administration Topical

Benzocaine is a local anesthetic commonly used as a topical pain reliever. It is the active ingredient in many over-the-counter analgesic ointments.

Chemical properties

Benzocaine is an ester, a compound made from the organic acid PABA (para-aminobenzoic acid) and ethanol. The process in which this ester is created is known as Fischer esterification.

How it relieves pain

Pain is caused by the stimulation of nerve endings. When the nerve endings are stimulated, sodium enters the nerve ending, which causes an electrical signal to build up in the nerve. Once the electrical signal becomes big enough, it is able to travel to the brain, which then interprets this as pain.

Esters of PABA work as a chemical barrier, stopping the sodium from being able to enter the nerve ending.

Related products

There are various other products that are also made from esters of PABA, many of which have similar anaesthetic properties. Dentists use Procaine (also called Novocaine) to numb teeth and gums.

Benzocaine is also contained in products such as:

  • First aid creams
  • Sore-throat spray
  • Sunburn remedies
  • Condoms (to prevent premature ejaculation)

Template:Local anesthetics


Template:Pharma-stub

de:Benzocain es:Benzocaína

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