Health Guide

Tetracaine/oxymetazoline (Into the nose)

Oxymetazoline Hydrochloride (ox-i-me-TAZ-oh-leen hye-droe-KLOR-ide), Tetracaine Hydrochloride (TE-tra-kane hye-droe-KLOR-ide)

Used to numb the affected tooth before a dental procedure.

Brand Name(s):

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

This medicine is not right for everyone. You should not receive it if you had an allergic reaction to oxymetazoline, tetracaine, benzyl alcohol, p-aminobenzoic acid (PABA), or similar medicines.

How to Use This Medicine:


  • A dentist will give you this medicine in a dental clinic. This medicine is given as a spray into your nose on the same side to the maxillary tooth on which the dental procedure will be done.
  • After 10 minutes of receiving the medicine, the dentist needs to perform a test drill to make sure that the affected tooth is already numb before starting the procedure.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Some foods and medicines can affect how this medicine works. Tell your doctor if you are using any of the following:
    • Acetaminophen, acetanilide, benzocaine, chloroquine, dapsone, naphthalene, nitrofurantoin, pamaquine, p-aminosalicylic acid, phenacetin, phenobarbital, phenytoin, primaquine, and quinine
    • Aniline dye
    • Beta blocker medicine
    • Medicine to treat depression (including MAO inhibitor, TCA)
    • Nitrate and nitrite medicine
    • Other inhaled medicine
    • Sulfa drug
  • Avoid using other products containing oxymetazoline within 24 hours before the scheduled dental procedure.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, liver disease, G6PD deficiency, poorly controlled high blood pressure, thyroid problems, pseudocholinesterase deficiency (a genetic disease), or a history of methemoglobinemia or frequent nosebleeds.
  • This medicine may cause the following problems:
    • High blood pressure
    • Methemoglobinemia (blood problem)
  • Your doctor will check your progress and the effects of this medicine at regular visits. Keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Bluish-colored lips, fingernails, or palms
  • Fast or slow, pounding heartbeat
  • Fever, headache, pale skin, dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Stuffy or runny nose, mild nosebleeds
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Change or loss of taste

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Last Updated: 7/4/2018
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