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Conscious Sedation Risks

Posted by on 3/14/2014

Conscious Sedation RisksAfter a second reported death of a patient under conscious sedation in North Carolina, the Board of Dental Examiners is pushing for changes to regulations to screening and use. The State board is asking members of the community and dental professionals to provide their input on possible changes for sedation as well as general dentistry practices.


Conscious sedation places a person in a depressed state, yet still responsive, for outpatient dental procedures. Unfortunately, this method of sedation has risks for some patients based on condition and history, and requires rigorous monitoring.


In two separate cases over the last 18 months, patients under conscious sedation died while being treated. Both cases included patients with a history that indicated they may not be ideal candidates for sedation.


Proponents for change include dental providers, board members, and members of the community who will all have a forum to voice their opinions and suggestions. Starting March 28th, there will be an open forum to discuss recommendations that will be drafted for review by the Rules Review Commission.