METHODOLOGY This was a case control study in patients who came routinely to the clinic for anti-vascular endothelial growth factor injections. Eyes were treated with one of two anesthesia modalities. Total of 216 injections in 120 patients were reviewed. One group (N = 107) underwent anesthesia with 0.5% proparacaine drops and the control group (N = 109) received 3.5% lidocaine gel. The pain perceived after injection was graded using the Numerical Rating Scale (NRS) and score immediately recorded by the ‘masked’ injecting physician.
RESULTS The mean pain score (± SD) for the proparacaine-only group vs gel group was 1.97 (± 1.17) vs 1.76 (± 0.92), P value = 0.3174. There was no statistical difference between the two groups.
CONCLUSION 3.5% lidocaine gel is not superior to 0.5% proparacaine drops as patients attained good pain control and excellent rates of overall satisfaction with proparacaine drops alone.