A doctor may use procedural sedation for a minor procedure that needs only small amounts of anesthesia and doesn't require an anesthesia specialist to be present. Procedural sedation combines the use of local anesthesia with sedatives to relax you. You may or may not be conscious.
A local anesthetic is injected into the body area that needs to be numbed for the procedure. The sedative is usually given intravenously (IV) first. Benzodiazepines (such as midazolam) are commonly used sedatives. You will most likely experience forgetfulness (amnesia) with midazolam.
You will be closely monitored during the procedure by a qualified health professional, such as a surgeon or other doctor, to avoid any complications.
During some but not all types of procedural sedation, you may respond appropriately to physical stimulation and verbal commands. Procedural sedation can help relieve pain and anxiety and limit some of the discomfort of lying still.
Procedural sedation may be used when:
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