Phenazone Overview


Phenazone, known in the U.S. as antipyrine, is a pain reliever, and a fever reducer. It is combined in ear drops (otic drops) with benzocaine, a medication used to numb the ear. It is used to relieve ear pain caused by infections, and remove a build up of ear wax.

The combination of phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine works by reducing pain and discomfort in the ear.

Phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine otic comes as a solution (liquid) to place into the ear. When used to relieve ear pain, it is usually used every 1 to 2 hours as needed. When used to help in the removal of ear wax, it is usually used 3 times daily for 2-3 days.

A common side effect is dizziness.


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Uses of Phenazone

Phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine otic is used to relieve ear pain and swelling caused by middle ear infections. It may be used along with antibiotics to treat an ear infection. It is also used to help remove a build up of ear wax in the ear. 

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Phenazone Brand Names

Phenazone may be found in some form under the following brand names:

Phenazone Drug Class

Phenazone is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Phenazone

This medication is generally well tolerated with very few side effects expected. 

Dizziness can occur, especially if this medication is instilled into the ear while cold. Warm the solution by holding the container in your hand for a few minutes to warm it.

Serious side effects that should be reported right away include:

  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • burning, redness, swelling, or pain in the ear

This is not a complete list of side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Phenazone Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medications you take including prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

When used as an otic solution, this medication is unlikely to interact with other medications.

Phenazone Precautions

Do not use this product if you are allergic to any of its ingredients including phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about inactive ingredients.

This medication may not be appropriate for you if you have a hole in the eardrum (perforated tympanic membrane).

Phenazone Food Interactions

Medications can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine otic, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving this medication.

Inform MD

Before using this medication tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:

  • are allergic to any ingredient in this product including phenazone (antipyrine) or benzocaine
  • have a hole in your ear drum(s) or ear tube(s). Your doctor will probably tell you not to use this medication.
  • are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding. If you become pregnant while using antipyrine and benzocaine otic, call your doctor.

Tell your doctor about all the medications you take including prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Phenazone and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy. Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy.

Phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine otic falls into category C. It is not known whether this medication is harmful to an unborn baby.

Phenazone and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.

It is not known if phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine otic crosses into human milk. Because many medications can cross into human milk and because of the possibility for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants with use of this medication, a choice should be made whether to stop nursing or stop the use of this medication. Your doctor and you will decide if the benefits outweigh the risk of using this medication.

Phenazone Usage

Phenazone (antipyrine) and benzocaine otic (eardrops) is for use only in the ears.

To use the eardrops, follow these steps:

  1. Warm the solution by holding the bottle in your hand for 1 to 2 minutes.

  2. Lie on your side or tilt affected ear upward.

  3. Being careful not to touch the tip of the bottle to your ear, or any other surface, instill the prescribed number of drops into your ear.

  4. In an adult, hold the earlobe up and back. In a child, hold the earlobe down and back. This will help the drops go into the ear.

  5. Keep head tilted for approximately 2 minutes.

  6. If instructed by your doctor, moisten a small piece of cotton with the drops and insert into the outer ear.

  7. Repeat steps 2 through 6 for the opposite ear, if necessary.

  8. Replace cap after use, without rinsing the dropper.

This medication is usually used as needed. If you miss a dose, instill the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not use extra solution to make up for a missed one.

Phenazone Dosage

Use this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

Phenazone Overdose

If this medication is taken by mouth, contact your local poison control center or seek emergency medical attention.

Other Requirements

Keep this and all medications out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture. Do not store it in the bathroom.

Do not freeze.