Hexobarbital

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]

Overview

Hexobarbital (as known in the US), or hexobarbitone (as known elsewhere), sold both in acid and sodium salt forms as Citopan, Evipan, and Tobinal (usually in 250-mgm. strength tablets), is a barbiturate derivative having hypnotic and sedative effects. It was used in the 1940s-1950s as an agent for inducing anesthesia for surgery, as well as a rapid-acting, short-lasting hypnotic for general use, and has a relatively fast onset of effects and short duration of action. However it can be difficult to control the depth of anesthesia with hexobarbital which makes it quite dangerous, and it has now been replaced by safer drugs in human medicine; usually thiopental would be the barbiturate of choice for this application these days. Hexobarbital is still used in some scientific research.

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