So let's talk
a little bit about some of the other drugs.
The most effective anti-anxiety medications we have
are benzodiazepines. These are drugs
such as, Valium is the one
that people remember, that's
an older drug. Currently we use
midazolam and lorazepam primarily.
We used to use these drugs as part of a pre-med,
before the patient came to surgery, an hour or two
before surgery. But this is largely been abandoned
much to everyone's surprise. Patients
found the sedation and the often accompanying amnesia
associated with these drugs, to be unpleasant.
With very anxious patients, a drug
such as midazolam, will bring some
relief prior to induction of anesthesia. Plus the amnestic
effect usually associated with the medication
may reduce the possibility
of recall during anesthesia.
These agents are generally utilized as sleep
aids or anti-anxiety medications,
and are not widely used for patients who
are going to receive general anesthesia.
They are very effective however improving anxiety levels
when patients are undergoing regional anesthesia
or surgery under local anesthetic injection.