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September 1949


Arch Surg. 1949;59(3):714-723. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1949.01240040722031

THE RELATIVELY recent discovery of the fact that procaine can be administered intravenously to people without serious results and even with benefit in some circumstances, has stimulated renewed interest in the pharmacology of this drug. It has been taught for some years that inadvertent intravenous injection of procaine hydrochloride was very dangerous because of its tendency to produce serious systemic reactions in the form of either circulatory depression or generalized convulsions. While these teachings were not entirely erroneous, they must be revised to take into account the rate and concentration of injection.

Experiments carried out by Eggleston and Hatcher,1 published in 1916 and 1919, furnished a background for the possibility of the intravenous administration of procaine. They reported that cocaine and holocaine® were destroyed rather slowly when administered intravenously but that procaine and several other drugs used for local anesthesia were rapidly destroyed when administered intravenously to animals. They

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