Classification of Pre-anesthetic Medication Drugs

When preparing for surgery or a medical procedure that requires anesthesia, the administration of pre-anesthetic medications is a common practice. These medications play a crucial role in ensuring that the patient is adequately prepared for anesthesia, reducing anxiety, and preventing various side effects.



  • Sedative-antianxiety drugs- Diazepam, Lorazepam, Promethazine
  • Opioids- Morphine, Pethidine
  • Anticholinergic drugs- Atropine, Hyoscine, Glycopyrrolate
  • Neuroleptics- Chlorpromazine, Triflupromazine, Haloperidol
  • Gastric acid suppressant drugs- Ranitidine, Famotidine, Omeprazole, Pantoprazole
  • Antiemetics- Metoclopramide, Domperidone, Ondansetron


Sedatives are used to calm and relax patients before surgery. They help reduce anxiety and promote a sense of calm. Common sedative drugs include:

  • Diazepam (Valium): This medication has a tranquilizing effect and can help patients feel more at ease before surgery.
  • Lorazepam (Ativan): Similar to diazepam, lorazepam is used to alleviate anxiety and promote relaxation.


Anxiolytics are drugs that specifically target anxiety. They can be particularly helpful for patients who are extremely anxious about their upcoming procedure. Common anxiolytic drugs include:

  • Midazolam (Versed): This medication is often used to induce relaxation and relieve anxiety.
  • Alprazolam (Xanax): Alprazolam can help reduce anxiety and nervousness.


Anticholinergic drugs help reduce the risk of excessive salivation and other secretions during surgery. They are especially useful when general anesthesia is administered. Common anticholinergic drugs include:

  • Atropine: Atropine helps dry the oral and respiratory secretions, making intubation and surgery easier.

H2 Blockers

H2 blockers are used to decrease the production of stomach acid. This is important because a full stomach during surgery can lead to complications like aspiration. Common H2 blockers include:

  • Ranitidine (Zantac): Ranitidine helps reduce gastric acid production.


Opioids are sometimes used as pre-anesthetic medication to provide pain relief and reduce the amount of anesthetic needed during surgery. Common opioid drugs include:

  • Morphine: Morphine can help manage pain before, during, and after surgery.
  • Fentanyl: Fentanyl is a potent opioid used for pain management.


Antiemetic drugs are administered to prevent nausea and vomiting, common side effects of anesthesia. Common antiemetic drugs include:

  • Ondansetron (Zofran): Ondansetron is effective in preventing postoperative nausea and vomiting.
  • Prochlorperazine (Compazine): This medication can help control nausea and vomiting.


Beta-blockers may be prescribed in specific cases to manage heart conditions before surgery. Common beta-blockers include:

  • Metoprolol: Metoprolol helps regulate heart rate and blood pressure.


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