Antipyrine and Benzocaine Otic Solution (Aurodex) for Ear Pain

Antipyrine and benzocaine otic solution is a medication used for treating ear pain that's caused by acute otitis media (middle ear infections). This medication may also reduce inflammation in the ear.

A woman with an earache using her ear drops

Corbis / VCG / Getty Images

Who Can Use It

Using this medication when the eardrum is damaged may cause inner ear damage. Antipyrine and benzocaine otic solution should not be used by anyone who currently has synthetic ventilation tubes in their ears or by anyone who may have a ruptured or otherwise impaired eardrum.

Check with your healthcare provider or pharmacist and inform them of any prescription or over-the-counter medications that you are taking. You should not use this medication if you are allergic to any of the ingredients including antipyrine or benzocaine.

How It's Used

Antipyrine and benzocaine otic solution comes in liquid form, typically in a bottle with a dropper.

Ear drops are best administered by a second person if possible.

Steps for placing the drops:

  1. The person receiving the drops should lay down on their side with the affected ear up.
  2. The ear should be pulled slightly back and up in order to straighten out the ear canal.
  3. After the prescribed number of drops are placed in the ear, the person receiving the drops should continue to lay on their side for a minute or two, so that the medication can fully penetrate the ear canal.
  4. You may also wish to moisten a small piece of cotton with the drops and place it in the outer ear.

This medication is usually used as needed, sometimes as frequently as every hour (follow the directions on the bottle) to control pain. It's more effective for controlling pain if it's used at regular intervals, but you do not need to worry if you miss a dose.

Antipyrine and benzocaine otic solution may be more comfortable and less likely to cause dizziness if it is warmed prior to being put into the ear. You can do this by either holding the bottle in your hands for a few minutes or running the bottle under warm (not hot) water for a few minutes.

This medication is only intended to be used in the ears. Do not get it in your mouth or eyes. If you accidentally swallow this medication, you should contact poison control immediately at 1-800-222-1222.

Can You Use it With Antibiotics?

Antipyrine and benzocaine otic solution can be used if your child is also taking an antibiotic that's been prescribed for the treatment of an ear infection.

These drops can also be used as a stand-alone medication without antibiotics. The CDC recommends that antibiotics should not be used for the treatment of routine ear infections.

Side Effects

Common side effects of this medication include burning or stinging when the ear drops are first applied. Some people may feel dizzy.

You should contact your healthcare provider if you or your child experience any of the following side effects:

  • Ear discharge or drainage
  • New or worsening redness or the ear or a rash
  • Increased ear pain

Allergic Reaction

It is possible to have an allergic reaction to antipyrine and benzocaine otic solution. Signs of an allergic reaction include itching, redness, or hives.

A serious allergic reaction may cause difficulty breathing, and swelling of the face, mouth, lips, or throat. If you have symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, go to the emergency room or call 911 immediately.

Signs to Watch Out For In Children

If your child is nonverbal, you might have to look carefully for signs of side effects. If you notice an increase in pain or you notice they start swallowing more frequently when you insert the drops—stop using the ear drops until you see a healthcare provider. This can be a sign of a ruptured eardrum. Pain can occur if medication flows into the inner ear, and the fluid draining through the eustachian tube into the back of your child's throat can make your child feel like they need to swallow.

Continued use without seeing a healthcare provider could result in ear damage if the eardrum is not completely whole.

Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  • Bauch & Lomb. Safety Data Sheet (PDF).
  • emedicine health. Antipyrine Benzocaine Otic Solution.
  • Medline Plus. Antipryine-Benzocaine Otic.

By Kristin Hayes, RN
Kristin Hayes, RN, is a registered nurse specializing in ear, nose, and throat disorders for both adults and children.