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Local anesthesia is preferable to general narcosis in practically all ophthalmic operations. Successful administration comes only through study of the sensory nerve supply to the globe and adnexa and through repeated use of such anesthesia.
Local anesthesia may be employed, with few exceptions, in any operation on a juvenile or an adult patient. It is frequently advisable to administer a sedative an hour or two prior to operation, especially to apprehensive and nervous persons. General anesthesia is more desirable for young children and for older children in whom the element of fear is uncontrollable.
The following advantages of local over general anesthesia may be enumerated :
Safety.—The greater safety of properly chosen local anesthetics is well established. For injection into the tissues it is advisable to use only comparatively small amounts of drugs of low toxicity. Such anesthesia is much safer than general anesthesia for patients with
O'BRIEN CS. LOCAL ANESTHESIA. Arch Ophthalmol. 1934;12(2):240–253. doi:10.1001/archopht.1934.00830150094012