December 1975

Studies of the Pain Produced by Mafenide Acetate Preparations in Burns

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, University of Rochester (NY) Medical Center and Rochester General Hospital (Drs Harrison and Caldwell), and the Department of Surgery, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque (Dr Shuck).

Arch Surg. 1975;110(12):1446-1449. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1975.01360180016003

• In a double-blind triple cross-over clinical study, 37 patients were exposed to several formulations of mafenide acetate (Sulfamylon Cream) and their pain responses were recorded and converted to a semiquantitative pain index.

The 11.2% concentration in cream was two to three times more painful than the 5% concentration. Hypertonicity and not the pH level appears to be the cause of the pain produced by the high (11.2%) concentration. The tonicity of the cream carrier and 11.2% mafenide acetate are 1,080 mOsm/kg and 1,100 mOsm/kg, respectively, for a total of 2,180 mOsm/kg.

The carrier cream without glycerol and a 5% concentration of mafenide cream were much less painful than the 11.2% concentration of mafenide. Both afforded a great deal of relief to the patients who received the medications.

(Arch Surg 110:1446-1449, 1975)