Methemoglobinemia is characterized by an increased level of methemoglobin (MetHb) in the peripheral blood. MetHb levels increase after tumescent anesthesia and need to be monitored. If a patient becomes symptomatic and/or the MetHb levels increase >10%, intravenous injection of an antidote is recommended. Toluidine blue is twice as effective as methylene blue in this respect.
A 27-year-old woman with advanced lipedema underwent her third liposuction under tumescent anesthesia. After surgery, her MetHb levels increased and needed injection of toluidine blue. She developed an acute and painful edema after extravasation of some toluidine blue due to a bursting vein. This is the first report in the recent medical literature. Clinical presentation, course, and treatment are described.