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Pharmacol Ther. 1999 Dec;84(3):233-48.

The role of new anesthetic agents.

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Department of Anesthesia, Manchester Royal Infirmary, Manchester, UK.


The three anesthetic drugs introduced most recently to the market are sevoflurane, desflurane, and ropivacaine. Sevoflurane and desflurane are both inhalational anesthetic agents and ropivacaine is a local anesthetic agent. Sevoflurane provides a rapid onset and offset of action; it is well tolerated with little airway irritation. It is hemodynamically stable, with low potential for toxicity. Concerns about its interaction with soda lime during low-flow anesthesia with the production of Compound A have not proved to be a clinical problem. While desflurane also provides rapid onset and recovery from anesthesia, it is not as hemodynamically stable as sevoflurane, and also causes airway irritation. Ropivacaine is a unique local anesthetic in that it is supplied as the pure S-enantiomer. It is at least as effective as bupivacaine, with lower toxicity and less motor block for the same degree of sensory block.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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