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Sevoflurane

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Dec 17, 2021.

Commonly used brand name(s)

In the U.S.

  • Sojourn
  • Ultane
  • Ultane Amerinet
  • Ultane Novation

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Liquid

Therapeutic Class: Volatile Liquid

Chemical Class: Haloalkane

Uses for sevoflurane

Inhaled sevoflurane is used to cause general anesthesia (loss of consciousness) before and during surgery. It belongs to the group of medicines known as general anesthetics.

Sevoflurane is to be given only by or under the direct supervision of a doctor.

Before using sevoflurane

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For sevoflurane, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to sevoflurane or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of inhaled sevoflurane in children. However, children are more likely to have unwanted side effects, including brain or nerve problems or heart problems, which may require caution in patients receiving sevoflurane.

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of inhaled sevoflurane in the elderly.

Breastfeeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Interactions with medicines

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving sevoflurane, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using sevoflurane with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.

  • Bepridil
  • Cisapride
  • Dronedarone
  • Levoketoconazole
  • Mesoridazine
  • Pimozide
  • Piperaquine
  • Saquinavir
  • Sparfloxacin
  • Terfenadine
  • Thioridazine
  • Ziprasidone

Using sevoflurane with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Alfentanil
  • Alfuzosin
  • Amiodarone
  • Amisulpride
  • Amitriptyline
  • Anagrelide
  • Apomorphine
  • Aripiprazole
  • Aripiprazole Lauroxil
  • Arsenic Trioxide
  • Asenapine
  • Astemizole
  • Atazanavir
  • Azithromycin
  • Bedaquiline
  • Buprenorphine
  • Buserelin
  • Ceritinib
  • Chloroquine
  • Chlorpromazine
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Citalopram
  • Clarithromycin
  • Clofazimine
  • Clomipramine
  • Clozapine
  • Crizotinib
  • Cyclobenzaprine
  • Dabrafenib
  • Dasatinib
  • Degarelix
  • Delamanid
  • Desipramine
  • Deslorelin
  • Deutetrabenazine
  • Dexmethylphenidate
  • Disopyramide
  • Dofetilide
  • Dolasetron
  • Domperidone
  • Donepezil
  • Doxepin
  • Droperidol
  • Ebastine
  • Efavirenz
  • Encorafenib
  • Entrectinib
  • Eribulin
  • Erythromycin
  • Escitalopram
  • Famotidine
  • Felbamate
  • Fexinidazole
  • Fingolimod
  • Flecainide
  • Fluconazole
  • Fluoxetine
  • Foscarnet
  • Fosphenytoin
  • Fostemsavir
  • Galantamine
  • Gatifloxacin
  • Gemifloxacin
  • Glasdegib
  • Gonadorelin
  • Goserelin
  • Granisetron
  • Halofantrine
  • Haloperidol
  • Histrelin
  • Hydroquinidine
  • Hydroxychloroquine
  • Hydroxyzine
  • Ibutilide
  • Iloperidone
  • Imipramine
  • Inotuzumab Ozogamicin
  • Itraconazole
  • Ivabradine
  • Ivosidenib
  • Ketoconazole
  • Lapatinib
  • Lefamulin
  • Lenvatinib
  • Leuprolide
  • Levofloxacin
  • Lofexidine
  • Lumefantrine
  • Macimorelin
  • Mefloquine
  • Methadone
  • Methylphenidate
  • Metronidazole
  • Mifepristone
  • Mirtazapine
  • Mizolastine
  • Mobocertinib
  • Moxifloxacin
  • Nafarelin
  • Nilotinib
  • Nitrous Oxide
  • Norepinephrine
  • Norfloxacin
  • Octreotide
  • Ofloxacin
  • Olanzapine
  • Ondansetron
  • Osilodrostat
  • Osimertinib
  • Oxaliplatin
  • Ozanimod
  • Pacritinib
  • Paliperidone
  • Panobinostat
  • Paroxetine
  • Pasireotide
  • Pazopanib
  • Pentamidine
  • Perphenazine
  • Pimavanserin
  • Pitolisant
  • Ponesimod
  • Posaconazole
  • Probucol
  • Procainamide
  • Prochlorperazine
  • Promethazine
  • Propafenone
  • Protriptyline
  • Quetiapine
  • Quinidine
  • Quinine
  • Ranolazine
  • Ribociclib
  • Rilpivirine
  • Risperidone
  • Ritonavir
  • Selpercatinib
  • Serdexmethylphenidate
  • Sertindole
  • Sertraline
  • Siponimod
  • Sodium Phosphate
  • Sodium Phosphate, Dibasic
  • Sodium Phosphate, Monobasic
  • Solifenacin
  • Sorafenib
  • Sotalol
  • St John's Wort
  • Sulpiride
  • Sunitinib
  • Tacrolimus
  • Tamoxifen
  • Telaprevir
  • Telavancin
  • Telithromycin
  • Tetrabenazine
  • Tolterodine
  • Toremifene
  • Trazodone
  • Triclabendazole
  • Trimipramine
  • Triptorelin
  • Vandetanib
  • Vardenafil
  • Vemurafenib
  • Venlafaxine
  • Vinflunine
  • Voclosporin
  • Voriconazole
  • Vorinostat
  • Zuclopenthixol

Using sevoflurane with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Alcuronium
  • Atracurium
  • Doxacurium
  • Metocurine
  • Mivacurium
  • Pancuronium
  • Pipecuronium
  • Rocuronium
  • Tubocurarine
  • Vecuronium

Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other medical problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of sevoflurane. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Heart or blood vessel disease or
  • Heart rhythm problems or
  • Hyperkalemia (high potassium in the blood) or
  • Hypotension (low blood pressure) or
  • Hypovolemia (low blood volume) or
  • Kidney disease or
  • Liver disease or
  • Lung or breathing problems (eg, respiratory depression)—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Hereditary problems (eg, high risk for malignant hyperthermia)—Should not be used in patients with these conditions.

Proper use of sevoflurane

A doctor or other trained health professional will give you sevoflurane in a hospital. You will inhale the medicine through a mask placed over your mouth and nose.

Precautions while using sevoflurane

Your doctor will check you closely after receiving sevoflurane. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly. Blood and urine tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.

Hyperkalemia may occur rarely after receiving sevoflurane. Tell your doctor right away if you have confusion, irregular heartbeat, nausea or vomiting, numbness or tingling in the hands, feet, or legs, or trouble breathing after receiving sevoflurane.

Sevoflurane may cause malignant hyperthermia (high body temperature). Check with your doctor right away if you have fast heartbeat, high fever, or rigid muscles.

Check with your doctor right away if you have black, tarry stools, chills, dark urine, dizziness, fever, general tiredness or weakness, headache, itching, light-colored stools, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, upper right stomach pain, vomiting of blood, or yellow eyes and skin. These may be symptoms of a serious liver problem.

Contact your doctor right away if you have any changes to your heart rhythm. You might feel dizzy or faint, or you might have a fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat. Make sure your doctor knows if you had a heart rhythm problem, including QT prolongation.

General anesthetics may cause some people to feel drowsy, tired, or weak. They may also cause problems with coordination and one's ability to think. Therefore, after receiving a general anesthetic, do not drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Sevoflurane side effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  • Blurred vision
  • chest pain, tightness, or discomfort
  • choking
  • confusion
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeat or pulse
  • lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
  • slow or irregular heartbeat
  • sweating
  • trouble breathing
  • unable to speak
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Less common

  • Low body temperature
  • not breathing
  • pale or blue lips, fingernails, or skin
  • weak or feeble pulse

Rare

  • Bleeding gums
  • blood in the urine or stools
  • body aches or pain
  • chills
  • cough
  • coughing up blood
  • decrease in frequency of urination
  • decrease in urine volume
  • difficulty in swallowing
  • difficulty in passing urine (dribbling)
  • extremely shallow or slow breathing
  • eye pain
  • fainting
  • general feeling of illness
  • headache
  • hoarseness
  • increased menstrual flow or vaginal bleeding
  • nausea
  • noisy breathing
  • nosebleeds
  • painful urination
  • paralysis
  • pinpoint red spots on skin
  • prolonged bleeding from cuts
  • red or dark brown urine
  • red or black, tarry stools
  • sore throat
  • stuffy or runny nose
  • tender, swollen glands in the neck
  • trouble in swallowing
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • voice changes

Incidence not known

  • Confusion as to time, place, or person
  • dark urine
  • hallucinations
  • high fever
  • hives, itching, or skin rash
  • holding false beliefs that cannot be changed by fact
  • increased blood pressure
  • increased thirst
  • light-colored stools
  • lower back or side pain
  • no blood pressure or pulse
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • restlessness
  • rigid muscles
  • seizures
  • shakiness
  • sleepiness
  • slow to respond
  • slurred speech
  • stomach pain, continuing
  • stopping of the heart
  • swelling of the face, fingers, lower legs
  • unconsciousness
  • unpleasant breath odor
  • unusual excitement, nervousness, or restlessness
  • upper right abdominal or stomach pain
  • vomiting of blood
  • yellow eyes and skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  • Shivering
  • sleepiness or unusual drowsiness

Less common

  • Clumsiness
  • problems with movement
  • watering of the mouth

Incidence not known

  • Burning, dry, or itching eyes
  • change in vision
  • discharge, excessive tearing
  • hiccups
  • impaired vision
  • lack or loss of strength
  • redness, pain, swelling of the eye, eyelid, or inner lining of eyelid

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.