Definition of thiopental in English:



mainly US Medicine
  • A sulfur-containing barbiturate drug used as a general anesthetic and hypnotic, and (reputedly) as a truth serum.

    Also called Pentothal (a trademark)
    British term thiopentone

    ‘In the critical care setting, midazolam, thiopental, and several antibiotics can be added to this list.’
    • ‘He and others canvassed six American states for information about their execution protocols, all of which use sequential injections of thiopental, a muscle relaxant, and potassium chloride to kill condemned prisoners.’
    • ‘Fentanyl or thiopental may be given intravenously if a deeper level of anesthesia is required during some parts of the procedure.’
    • ‘The procedure typically involves the injection of three substances: first, sodium thiopental to induce anaesthesia, followed by pancuronium bromide to relax muscles, and finally potassium chloride to stop the heart.’
    • ‘The saline intravenous lines are turned off and the thiopental sodium is injected which puts the inmate into a deep sleep.’



/ˌTHīōˈpentəl/ /ˌθaɪoʊˈpɛntəl/ /ˌTHīōˈpen(t)l/ /ˌθaɪoʊˈpɛn(t)l/


1940s from thio- + a contraction of pentobarbital.