Mechanical ventilation during pregnancy: sedation, analgesia, and paralysis

Clin Obstet Gynecol. 2014 Dec;57(4):844-50. doi: 10.1097/GRF.0000000000000064.


Pregnant women occasionally require mechanical ventilation. Ventilated patients commonly need some form of analgesia and/or sedation with or without paralytics. The use of these agents is common in the intensive care unit setting, but most maternal-fetal medicine specialists are unfamiliar with their use. In the vast majority of cases, guidelines and recommendations regarding the use of these agents should be followed as recommended for nonpregnant individuals. This article discusses the most relevant issues of sedatives, analgesics, and neuromuscular blockers used in modern critical care practice.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypnotics and Sedatives / therapeutic use*
  • Neuromuscular Blocking Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Pregnancy
  • Respiration, Artificial / methods*


  • Analgesics
  • Hypnotics and Sedatives
  • Neuromuscular Blocking Agents