Sheil, M., Chambers, M., Polkinghorne, A. et al. 2021. Topical application of lidocaine and bupivacaine to disbudding wounds in dairy calves: Safety, toxicology and wound healing. Animals 11(3), 869.
Tri-Solfen® is a combination topical anaesthetic and antiseptic solution containing lidocaine, bupivacaine, adrenaline and cetrimide. Applied to wounds, it is reported to reduce the pain experienced by calves following thermocautery disbudding. While lidocaine and bupivacaine are widely used in medicine, conflicting data exist on the impact of these compounds when applied directly to the surgical wound. To investigate the safety of Tri-Solfen® applied to thermocautery disbudding wounds of calves, experiments were performed to measure (i) the safety of Tri-Solfen® (including in overdose situations); and (ii) the impact of Tri-Solfen® application at recommended doses on disbudding wound healing under field conditions. Haematological, biochemical and urinalysis parameters did not show clinically significant differences between placebo and Tri-Solfen® groups (1×, 3× and 5× dose). No adverse health impacts were reported. Histopathological analysis of wounds noted a reduction in bacterial colonies in Tri-Solfen®-treated wounds. Under field conditions, no negative impacts on wound healing were noted. Conversely, there was reduced incidence of abnormal wounds, with an associated trend toward improved average daily gain at days 11–12 in Tri-Solfen®-treated animals. These data are considered to support the safety of topical anaesthesia, as formulated in Tri-Solfen®, to the thermocautery disbudding wound in calves.