Moderate intravenous (IV) sedation combined with local anesthesia is common for outpatient oral surgery procedures. An ideal sedative agent must be safe and well tolerated by patients and practitioners. This study evaluated fospropofol, a relatively new sedative/hypnotic, in comparison to midazolam, a commonly used benzodiazepine, for IV moderate sedation during oral and maxillofacial surgery. Sixty patients were randomly assigned to either the fospropofol or the midazolam group. Each participant received 1 μg/kg of fentanyl prior to administration of the selected sedative. Those in the fospropofol group received an initial dose of 6.5 mg/kg, with 1.6 mg/kg supplemental doses as needed. Those in the midazolam group received initial doses of 0.05 mg/kg, followed by 0.02 mg/kg supplemental doses. The quality of sedation in each patient was evaluated with regard to (a) onset of sedation, maintenance, and recovery profile; (b) patient and surgeon satisfaction; and (c) hemodynamic stability and adverse effects. The fospropofol group demonstrated shorter physical recovery times than midazolam patients, taking a mean of 11.6 minutes versus 18.4 minutes for physical recovery (P = .007). Cognitive recovery comparison did not find any difference with a mean of 7.5 minutes versus 8.8 minutes between the 2 drug groups (P = .123). The fospropofol group had a higher rate of local anesthetic injection recall (90.5 vs 44.4%, P = .004). Other parameters of recall were comparable. Two adverse effects demonstrated significance, with more patients in the midazolam group experiencing tachycardia (48.2 vs 9.4%, P = .001), and more patients in the fospropofol group experiencing perineal discomfort (40.6 vs 0, P < .001). No significant difference was found in any other measures of sedation safety, maintenance, or satisfaction. Fospropofol, when administered intravenously by a dentist anesthesiologist at the indicated dose in this study, appears to be a safe, well-tolerated alternative to midazolam for intravenous moderate sedation during minor oral surgery procedures.