Last update: June 1, 2019


Very Low Risk for breastfeeding

Safe. Compatible.
Not risky for breastfeeding or infant.

Local anesthetic indicated for the relief of pain and cutaneous itching, vaginal, rectal, otic, dental and oral mucosa.
Topical application.

At latest update, relevant published data on excretion into breast milk were not found.

Topical anesthetics (intended for dermatological or oral use) when properly used, show limited systemic absorption which is practically nil, with nil or non-significant systemic levels in maternal plasma and breast milk and should pose no harm to the breastfed infant (Hale 2019 p, PDR 2018, AEMPS 2018, Briggs 2017, AEMPS 2008, Nice 2000).

Benzocaine may induce appearance of methemoglobinemia and systemic toxicity if absorbed (PCR 2018, Hoffman 2015, Lepe 2015, Bittmann 2011, Chung 2010, Bouziri 2010, Bong 2009).

Avoid use on the breast, otherwise, in case of use on the nipple, apply after a feed and wipe it out by thoroughly washing with water before the next feed.
Never apply on the nipple.


Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM´s pediatricians and pharmacists, and are based on updated scientific publications.
It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

Benzocaine is also known as

Benzocaine in other languages or writings:


Main tradenames from several countries containing Benzocaine in its composition:


Variable Value Unit
Bioavailability < 10 %
Molecular weight 165 daltons


  1. Hale TW. Hale's Medications & Mothers' Milk. Springer Publishing Company. 2019
  2. Benzocaine (Anbesol). Drug Summary. 2018 Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  3. AEMPS. Benzocaína. Ficha técnica. 2018 Full text (in our servers)
  4. Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Towers CV, Forinash AB. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation: A Reference Guide to Fetal and Neonatal Risk. Wolters Kluwer Health. 11th edition (acces on line) 2017
  5. Lepe-Zúñiga JL, Aguilar-Gómez LE, Godínez-Téllez NC. [Association of benzocaine and paracetamol with neonatal-acquired methemoglobinemia]. Bol Med Hosp Infant Mex. 2015 Abstract
  6. Hoffman C, Abubakar H, Kalikiri P, Green M. Nosocomial Methemoglobinemia Resulting from Self-Administration of Benzocaine Spray. Case Rep Anesthesiol. 2015 Abstract
  7. Bittmann S, Krüger C. Benzocaine-induced methaemoglobinaemia: a case study. Br J Nurs. 2011 Abstract
  8. Bouziri A, Khaldi A, Menif K, Ben Jaballah N. Unusual cause of severe toxic methemoglobinemia in an infant: a case report. Int J Emerg Med. 2010 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  9. Chung NY, Batra R, Itzkevitch M, Boruchov D, Baldauf M. Severe methemoglobinemia linked to gel-type topical benzocaine use: a case report. J Emerg Med. 2010 Abstract
  10. Bong CL, Hilliard J, Seefelder C. Severe methemoglobinemia from topical benzocaine 7.5% (baby orajel) use for teething pain in a toddler. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2009 Abstract
  11. AEMPS Hemoal (Benzocaína + Efedrina). Ficha técnica. 2008 Full text (in our servers)
  12. Nice FJ, Snyder JL, Kotansky BC. Breastfeeding and over-the-counter medications. J Hum Lact. 2000 Nov;16(4):319-31. Review. Erratum in: J Hum Lact 2001 Feb;17(1):90. Abstract

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