Used in the induction of general anesthesia.
Etomidate is a non-barbiturate hypnotic that acts at the level of the reticular-activating system to produce anesthesia. Etomidate is an imidazole compound that appears to depress CNS function via GABA. Duration of action is intermediate between thiopental and methohexital, and recovery from a single dose is rapid with little residual depression. Like the barbiturates and propofol, etomidate is does not induce analgesia. Etomidate induces unconsciousness within one circulation time. Recovery is rapid as a result of extensive redistribution and rapid metabolism.
mechanism of action
Etomidate binds at a distinct binding site associated with a Cl-
ionopore at the GABAA
receptor, increasing the duration of time for which the Cl-
ionopore is open. The post-synaptic inhibitory effect of GABA in the thalamus is, therefore, prolonged.
Undesirable side effects of etomidate that may limit its use include pain on injection, myoclonus and adrenocortical suppression lasting 4-6 hours following an induction dose.
Hepatic. Metabolized rapidly by ester hydrolysis to inactive metabolites.
route of elimination
Approximately 75% of the administered dose is excreted in the urine during the first day after injection.