Drug reverses dental anesthetic

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by By JEAN ENERSEN / KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on August 15, 2009 at 1:34 PM

Updated Thursday, Sep 24 at 12:37 PM

Video: Drug reverses dental anesthetic

For some people, it's the whine of the drill, the sound of suction or those intimidating dental tools that make them dread the dentist. For Diane, it's that frozen feeling.

"Having to get numbed up and all that is a weird feeling," she said.

This will be her last time to endure that.

"So, when we're almost finished with the filling, we'll administer the reversal agent and your numbness will go away in about half the time. Isn't that great?" said dentist Mary Swift.

Dr. Swift is using a newly FDA-approved product called OraVerse. A single injection, when the mouth is already asleep, allows blood flow to return to the gums, lips, and cheeks, reversing the anesthetic. In addition to convenience, dentists say it has solid medical advantages.

"We've seen some pretty traumatic injuries after dental work with kids biting their cheeks and tongues," said Dr. Swift.

OraVerse is not covered by dental insurance. A dose will cost $30 to $50 cash, depending on how much the dentist charges. Many may not even carry it yet.

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Ten minutes after the reversal agent was administered, Diane said she could definitely see a difference in how much control she had over the muscles.

For the first time, she walked out of the dentist's office smiling.

OraVerse was tested in patients range in ages from 4 to 92.

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