Lidocaine patches are used to relieve the pain of post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN; the burning, stabbing pains, or aches that may last for months or years after a shingles infection). Lidocaine is in a class of medications called local anesthetics. It works by stopping nerves from sending pain signals.
Lidocaine comes as a patch to apply to the skin. It is applied only once a day as needed for pain. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Use lidocaine patches exactly as directed.
Your doctor will tell you how many lidocaine patches you may use at one time and the length of time you may wear the patches. Never apply more than three patches at one time, and never wear patches for more than 12 hours per day. Using too many patches or leaving patches on for too long may cause serious side effects.
To apply the patches, follow these steps:
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Before using lidocaine patches,
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.
This medication is usually used as needed. If your doctor has told you to use lidocaine patches regularly, use the missed patch as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed patch and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not use a double dose to make up for a missed one.
Lidocaine patches may cause side effects. If any of these symptoms occur, remove your patch and do not put it back on until the symptoms go away. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
Some side effects can be serious. The following symptoms are uncommon, but if you experience any of them, call your doctor immediately:
Lidocaine patches may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while using this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online ( Web Site ) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA's Safe Disposal of Medicines website ( Web Site) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. Web Site
If you wear too many patches or wear patches for too long, too much lidocaine may be absorbed into your blood. In that case, you may experience symptoms of an overdose.
In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at Web Site. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can't be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.
Symptoms of overdose may include:
Keep all appointments with your doctor
Do not let anyone else use your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.
Selected Revisions: March 15, 2016.