What is Moderate Sedation

Moderate sedation is used to help patients relax or feel sleepy during a procedure. It also helps to lessen pain. You may almost be asleep, but you are easy to wake up and are able to answer questions.

It is used for minor surgery and certain types of tests. It may be used in a hospital or clinic. Your health care provider will talk with you before your procedure.

There are a few different medicines that can be used for moderate sedation. The medicine may be given to you as a pill, injection, or through an IV (intravenous) line.

An IV is a small tube that is placed in a vein in the arm. Fluids and medicines can be given through it. Once an IV is placed, it should not hurt. Your arm may feel cool from the fluids.

You may be asked not to eat or drink for several hours before your surgery or test.

During Moderate Sedation

When you are sedated, your oxygen level, heart rate, and blood pressure are checked.

You may have a heart monitor and get oxygen. A doctor or nurse will be with you.

You will be asked questions about how you are feeling. It is important to answer them.


If you plan to leave the hospital or clinic on the same day, plan to stay as long as needed to recover. The least amount of time you will need to stay is 30 minutes.

You must have a responsible adult drive you home and stay with you for at least 6 hours after getting home.

You may have blurred vision, brief short-term memory loss, nausea, and feel dizzy for a short time. You may not remember details about the procedure. The sleepy feeling does not last long. You will feel back to normal in a short time.

Even though you may feel normal, plan to take it easy for 24 hours after.

Do not make important decisions (personal or business) until the next day.

No driving, dangerous activities, or drinking alcohol until at least the next morning after the procedure.