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Tumescent Anesthesia for Dermatosurgical Procedures Other Than Liposuction.

CONTEXT: Tumescent local anesthesia is a form of local anesthesia, which is a technique in which a dilute local anesthetic solution is injected into the subcutaneous tissue until it becomes firm and tense. Originally developed to facilitate liposuction, the use of tumescent anesthesia has expanded to other dermatological and plastic surgery procedures, as well as to other disciplines, including endocrine and vascular surgeries. For infiltration local anesthesia, the conventional dosage of lidocaine is up to 4.5 mg/kg, and that with adrenaline is up to 7 mg/kg; however, in liposuction using tumescent anesthesia, the recommended maximum dose of lidocaine with adrenaline is up to 55 mg/kg. There are several important pharmacological, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacodynamic factors that need to be considered in the administration of tumescent anesthesia leading to considerable interdisciplinary differences of opinion with respect to the maximum dose of local anesthetic permissible. Although several studies and publications have studied these issues in liposuction extensively, the role of tumescent anesthesia in other indications has not been reviewed adequately.

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to discuss the science behind tumescent anesthesia, its applications, and safety considerations in different dermatosurgical procedures other than liposuction.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: For this review, a systematic literature search in PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, Central, Emcare, Academic Search Premier, and ScienceDirect was conducted for safety studies on tumescent anesthesia.

CONCLUSION: Tumescent anesthesia is generally very well accepted by patients and is relatively safe at the recommended doses. Nonetheless, one must be vigilant about the signs and symptoms of LAST, as they may not manifest until several hours after the procedure. Lipid emulsion therapy should be readily available and could prove life-saving in such situations.

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