Comparison of interventions for pain control with tenaculum placement: A randomized clinical trial

Lisa M. Goldthwaite, Maureen K. Baldwin, Jessica Page, Elizabeth A. Micks, Mark D. Nichols, Alison B. Edelman, Paula H. Bednarek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Objective Although previous studies have demonstrated that a variety of local anesthetics are effective to decrease pain associated with tenaculum placement, no studies directly compare an injection with a topical anesthetic. The objective of this study was therefore to compare mean pain scores with tenaculum placement after an intracervical lidocaine injection or topical lidocaine gel. Study Design A randomized, single-blinded trial of women presenting for office gynecologic procedures that required a tenaculum. Women aged 18 years or older were randomized to receive either a 1% lidocaine intracervical injection or topical application of 2% lidocaine gel to the cervix immediately prior to tenaculum placement. The primary outcome was pain at the time of tenaculum placement, measured on a 100 mm Visual Analog Scale. Secondary outcomes included pain with the intervention and satisfaction with tenaculum placement. Results Seventy-four women were enrolled and randomized; 35 subjects in each group met criteria for analysis. The two groups had similar socio-demographic characteristics. Women who received the injection had lower mean pain levels at tenaculum placement [12.3 mm (S.D. 17.4 mm) versus 36.6 mm (S.D. 23.0 mm), p<.001] but higher mean pain levels with study drug application [20.4 mm (S.D. 19.4 mm) versus 5.9 mm (S.D. 8.6 mm), p<.001]. Satisfaction with tenaculum placement was similar for the two groups. Conclusion Mean pain with tenaculum placement is lower after receiving a lidocaine injection than after receiving a topical lidocaine gel. Satisfaction with tenaculum placement is similar with both interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)229-233
Number of pages5
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2014


  • Analgesia
  • Cervix
  • Gel
  • Injection
  • Lidocaine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Comparison of interventions for pain control with tenaculum placement: A randomized clinical trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this