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May 1954


Author Affiliations

From the Department of Ophthalmology, the University of Oregon Medical School.

AMA Arch Ophthalmol. 1954;51(5):663-670. doi:10.1001/archopht.1954.00920040673010

THIS STUDY of the ocular pharmacology of a new drug, benoxinate (Dorsacaine), is part of a long-range program which has been directed toward finding improved methods and agents for inducing anesthesia local to the eye and its adnexa. Earlier in the program it was demonstrated that various anesthetics differ markedly in their rates of penetration of the cornea.1 The topical effectiveness of anesthetics was found to be dependent upon good penetrability of the epithelium, as well as upon anesthetic potency. Also, it was demonstrated that differences in the physical properties of drugs largely determine their relative corneal penetrability from a given vehicle. These physical properties, notably lipid solubility and surface activity, depend upon the molecular structure of the compound and are predictable to a certain extent. Anesthetic activity also is attributable to certain molecular configurations.2

These facts have simplified the search for new anesthetic drugs. A number of

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