Respiratory depression during and after sedation and anesthesia is a recognized problem. We need look no further than the American Society of Anesthesiologists guidelines for anesthesia, sedation, and the postanesthesia care unit, which include continuous monitoring for oxygen saturation and capnography.1,2  This level of surveillance is necessary because all hypnotic and opioid analgesic medications have the potential to produce life-threatening depression of ventilatory drive, and interventions need to be quickly and effectively instituted when respiratory depression is first detected. It stands to reason, then, that if a drug could partially or largely reverse the respiratory depressive effects of anesthetics, hypnotics, and opioids, they should be administered frequently as reversal agents for neuromuscular blockade. A recent review in Anesthesiology detailed the growing interest in developing safe and effective reversal agents that promote emergence from general anesthesia and deep sedation. Encouraging preclinical results with orexin, a hypothalamic...

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