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What is the difference between propofol and etomidate?

7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Karen Sibert
Anesthesiology
6 doctors agree

In brief: Different effects

Both are medications given IV (into a vein) to make someone sleep.
Propofol may be used as a sedative or at the start of general anesthesia (ga); etomidate is used mostly in ga. Propofol lowers blood pressure more. Etomidate may be used for stable BP in trauma or heart surgery. Both can reduce or stop breathing and must be given under anesthesiologist supervision with careful monitoring.

In brief: Different effects

Both are medications given IV (into a vein) to make someone sleep.
Propofol may be used as a sedative or at the start of general anesthesia (ga); etomidate is used mostly in ga. Propofol lowers blood pressure more. Etomidate may be used for stable BP in trauma or heart surgery. Both can reduce or stop breathing and must be given under anesthesiologist supervision with careful monitoring.
Dr. Karen Sibert
Dr. Karen Sibert
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