Local Anesthesics Flashcards Preview

Pharmacology Test #6 > Local Anesthesics > Flashcards

Flashcards in Local Anesthesics Deck (41)
Loading flashcards...

Electrochemical gradients are maintained by

active transport (ATPase) and K+ leak channels (sets the negative membrane potential)


Depolarization causes

1. opening of NaV channels, influx of cations and drive Vm to positive potentisl
2. KV channels open and conduct current in opposite direction, repolarizing Vm back close to EK


What is the "m" gate and the "h" gate doing at a hyperpolarized resting membrane potential?

"m" gate is closed and the "h" gate is open


What is the "m" gate and the "h" gate doing at a depolarized membrane potential?

"m" gate opens and sodium rushes into the cell; "h" gate is still open


The two gates on the voltage-gated sodium channels

"m" gate (actual channel itself) and an "h" gate


What does the "h" gate do shortly after the sodium channel opens?

the "h" gate closes; the "m" gate remains open; closure of the "h" gate precludes the channel from conducting current - inactivated


Voltage-gated sodium channel inactivation occurs during which period?

occurs during the absolute refractory period


Structure of the voltage-gated sodium channel

tetrameric structure though a single polypeptide


Effects of Na+ channel block on the electrophysiology of a nerve cell

Na+ channel blockade will slow the upstroke rate and amplitude, sometimes to the point of abolishing the AP altogether; this slows or eliminates the conduction through nerve


Factors affecting pharmacological action

1. Frequency of transmission
2. Size/class of peripheral axons
3. pH (acidic pH reduces efficacy of LA)
4. Vascularity of target tissue


Size/class of peripheral axons related to anesthetics

small diameter axons are blocked better than large diameter axons; myelinated axons blocked better compared to unmyelinated fibers of same diameter because only a few nodes need to be blocked to halt transmission


pH of environment related to strength of anesthetics

less effective when injected into infected (acidic) tissue becasue less is non-ionized versus at physiological pH and non-ionized is the form that penetrates biological membranes


How does vascularity related to local anesthetics

greater blood flow results in faster/better absorption and higher blood concentration (an issue for toxicity)


Slow-firing nerves

lower frequency; drug completely dissociates between AP spikes, activity is preserved


Fast-firing nerves

high frequency; drug does not completely dissociate between spikes; block accumulates each spike; activity is suppressed


Hyperpolarized nerves

hyperpolarized Vm; drug completely dissociates between spikes; activity is preserved


Depolarized nerves

depolarized Vm prolongs drug interaction with channel; high percentage of channels are always blocked; activity is suppressed


Why does local anesthetic block small fibers better than large ones?

large ones have the ability to overcome blockade at low LA concentrations whereas small fibers do not


Why do you give alpha agonists with local anesthetics?

alpha adrenergic agonists are used with LA to locally constrict blood flow and prevent escape or large amounts of LA molecules into the circulation; this traps LA in the local area, increases its local concentration and can prolong its duration of action


Where should a mixture of alpha agonists and LA be avoided?

should be avoided in areas poorly vascularized due to risk of necrotic tissue damage


Why are LA often stored on the shelf at a low pH of 3 to 5 and why is bicarbonate often added immediately prior to injection of LA?

done to raise the pH closer to 7 which reduces pain on injection caused by low pH, and can enhance the onset of the LA


Local anesthetic prototypes

1. Cocaine
2. Procaine
3. Lidocaine


What must happen to LA in order for them to cross nerve sheaths into the nerve cell membrane itself

LA must become non-ionized (this occurs better for LA with a pKa closer to 7.4)


What form of LA blocks channels?

ionized form blocks channels



1. Bupivacaine
2. Etidocaine
3. Levobupivacaine
4. Lidocaine
5. Mepivacaine
6. Prilocaine
7. Ropivacaine



1. Benzocaine
2. Chloroprocaine
3. Cocaine
4. Procaine
5. Tetracaine


Properties of Amides

fast onset; med/long duration; slow half-life; hydrolysis by CYP system


Properties of Esters

variable onset; short to long duration; rapid half life; hydrolysis by esterases


Are amides or esters more likely to have a longer duration of action?



Local anesthetic cardiovascular toxicity

arrhythmias; depresses cardiac AP (rate and force, QRS spread)