FDA OK's FoCo firm's needle-free dental anesthetic

July 15, 2016  14:26

If the fear of a giant needle piercing the roof of your mouth keeps you from the dentist, there's some relief in sight.

The FDA recently approved Kovanaze, the first needle-free dental anesthetic developed by Fort Collins-based bio-pharmaceutical company St. Renatus LLC.

Instead of a needle, Kovanaze is administered through a nasal spray and is effective on half the upper teeth in adults and children.

“For more than 100 years, the dental industry has delivered dental anesthesia using a needle injection," St. Renatus CEO Steve Merrick said. "This is the first time we've proven there is a needle-free method" that delivers the same effect.

U.S. dentists currently administer about 250 million injections each year; Kovanaze could be an option in 70 million to 80 million of those injections. "Realistically, if we target 10 percent of that I would consider it a success," Merrick said.

St. Renatus, founded by Dr. Mark Kollar, has been working on the nasal mist for a decade.

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