Procaine HCl is a local anesthetic drug of the amino ester group. It is used primarily to reduce the pain of intramuscular injection of penicillin, and it is also used in dentistry. Owing to the ubiquity of the trade name Novocain, in some regions procaine is referred to generically as procaine. It acts mainly by being a sodium channel blocker.Today it is used therapeutically in some countries due to its sympatholytic, anti-inflammatory, perfusion enhancing, and mood enhancing effects.
Procaine was first synthesized in 1905, shortly after amylocaine. It was created by the German chemist Alfred Einhorn who gave the chemical the trade name procaine, from the Latin nov- (meaning new) and -caine, a common ending for alkaloids used as anesthetics. It was introduced into medical use by surgeon Heinrich Braun. Prior to the discovery of amylocaine and procaine, was the most commonly used local anesthetic. Einhorn wished his new discovery to be used for amputations, but surgeons preferred general anesthetic. Dentists, however, found it very useful.