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Research Letter |

Effect of Microneedle Pretreatment on Topical Anesthesia A Randomized Clinical Trial

Jennifer Ornelas, BA1; Negar Foolad, BA, MAS2; Vivian Shi, MD2; Waqas Burney, MBBS2; Raja K. Sivamani, MD, MS, CAT2
[+] Author Affiliations
1Medical Student, School of Medicine, University of California, Davis, Sacramento
2Department of Dermatology, University of California, Davis, Sacramento
JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(4):476-477. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2015.5544.
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This study randomized healthy patients to real vs sham microneedling on opposite arms to evaluate effects of the pretreatment on topical anesthesia with lidocaine cream, 4%.

Microneedles are microscopic needles capable of creating microchannels through the stratum corneum to improve transdermal drug delivery.13 Microneedles have been shown1,2,46 to enhance the delivery of topical anesthetics with use of in vitro and animal models. In this split-body, randomized clinical trial, we investigated whether pretreatment with microneedles enhanced the anesthetic effect produced by topical lidocaine cream, 4%.

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Figure 1.
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Figure 2.
Summary of Pain Assessment

A, Spring-loaded needle lancet pain stimuli were assessed in all participants using a visual analog scale (VAS) (0-100 mm) on the right and left volar forearms at 2, 5, 10, and 30 minutes after microneedle (MN) and sham pretreatment. B, Participants who were more sensitive to pain from the spring-loaded needle lancets (>20 mm on the VAS; range, 0-100 mm) were assessed for pain on the right and left volar forearms at 2, 5, 10, and 30 minutes. Results are shown as means; error bars represent SD.

aP < .05 compared with sham treatment.

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