Anaesthetic use – Introduction

If you go the dentist and need your upper backmost wisdom teeth removed, it is likely that the dentist will give you an injection in the gum and also an injection in the roof of your mouth. The injection in the roof of the mouth is called a palatal anaesthetic. It can be quite painful and can result in swelling and discomfort after the tooth is removed. Dr. Mark Badcock wondered if the palatal anaesthetic was really helping to reduce pain. His experience as a dentist suggested that it might not.

The key question Mark wanted to answer was:

Is palatal anaesthetic needed when removing the third upper molar teeth?


2002 Idea to conduct an experimental trial to investigate clinical experience
September, 2002 Ethics applications to The University of Melbourne’s Human Research Ethics Committe, and to the Ethics in Clinical Research Committee of the Department of Human Services, State Government of Victoria
2003 Study design
March, 2004 Participants recruited and Data collection commences
January, 2005 Data analysis commences