This large retrospective cohort found the overall risk of methemoglobinemia associated with topical anesthetic was low (0.035%) and was most common in hospitalized patients with benzocaine-based anesthetics. Hospitalists should be aware of this risk in hospitalized patients undergoing procedures (abstract).
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.