Propofol Sedation

Conscious-sedation or Propofol: An Introduction for Patients

Different approaches and medications have been used to induce sedation and amnesia in patients undergoing endoscopic procedures. At Spokane Digestive, we offer nurse-administered conscious sedation with Fentanyl/Versed or monitored anesthesia care with Propofol.

Conscious sedation is safe and effective and continues to be the most widely used approach for sedating patients undergoing EGD or colonoscopy. However, Propofol is gaining popularity among endoscopy centers, and the physicians of Spokane Digestive Center are advocates for the use of Propofol in their ambulatory surgery center because patients generally feel better.

Propofol works very quickly allowing the anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist to add small doses, minute by minute, to safely fine-tune the sedation to each patient’s unique, immediate need; yet, it has a very short duration of action allowing the vast majority of patients to wake up very quickly with very little, if any, nausea or sense of a “hangover.” Most patients are able to participate in their usual daily activities soon afterward, albeit with certain cautionary driving restrictions for 24 hours.

These are some of the observations of our recovery nurses who are caring for the patients after they received Propofol:

  • Wake up faster
  • Rarely nauseated
  • Evacuate bowel air more easily
  • Drink fluids faster
  • No “knocked out” feeling
  • Fewer patient phone calls
  • Generally just feel much better
  • Minimal amnesia—able to recall conversations with their physician and a better understanding of their discharge instructions

At the time your endoscopy procedure is scheduled, we will work with you to determine if Propofol is a covered benefit and the right choice for you. Beyond screening examinations, Propofol is indicated for many medical conditions, and these criteria are reviewed with you during the pre-assessment process when we review your medical history. It is most often given in situations in which procedures are more invasive or when the patient is especially fragile, difficult to sedate, or has a history of sleep apnea. Propofol is a better choice for patients who use Cannabis routinely.

Irrespective of whether you receive conscious sedation or Propofol, we are committed to making you comfortable while providing a high-quality endoscopic evaluation in a safe environment with an atmosphere of compassion and kindness.