anesthetic

adjective
an·​es·​thet·​ic | \ ˌa-nəs-ˈthe-tik How to pronounce anesthetic (audio) \

Definition of anesthetic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or capable of producing anesthesia
2 : lacking awareness or sensitivity was anesthetic to their feelings

anesthetic

noun

Definition of anesthetic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a substance that produces anesthesia
2 : something that brings relief : palliative

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Other Words from anesthetic

Adjective

anesthetically \ -​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce anesthetically (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for anesthetic

Synonyms: Noun

analgesic, anodyne, painkiller

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Examples of anesthetic in a Sentence

Noun

The doctor gave him the stitches without an anesthetic. the dentist waited until the anesthetic took effect

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The bugs then pierce their prey with a dagger-like proboscis, injecting enzymes and possibly anesthetic chemicals. National Geographic, "Giant water bugs eat turtles, ducklings, and even snakes," 3 Apr. 2019 Just like humans, plants can succumb to the effects of general anesthetic drugs, researchers report this week in the Annals of Botany. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "We can make plants pass out—with the same drugs that mysteriously knock us out," 12 Dec. 2017 Earlier this year, Florida amended its lethal-injection protocol to include etomidate, an anesthetic agent that has never been used in executions, after exhausting its supply of the sedative midazolam. Joe Palazzolo, WSJ, "Johnson & Johnson Wades Into Death Penalty Debate For First Time," 22 Aug. 2017 According to Italian investigators, when the woman (who has not been named to protect her privacy) arrived at an apartment for the shoot, Lukasz Pawel Herba and another man injected her with ketamine, an anesthetic drug used to sedate horses. Amanda Erickson, Washington Post, "This man is accused of kidnapping a 20-year-old British model and then trying to sell her on the Internet," 5 Aug. 2017 The Red Cross team delivered surgical items, intravenous fluids and anesthetic supplies to help treat hundreds of wounded, Mr. Grand said. Reuters, New York Times, "Medical Supplies Reach War-Torn City in Yemen," 13 Feb. 2016 His doctor, Conrad Murray, was convicted of manslaughter after Jackson overdosed on the anesthetic drug propofol. Tony Hicks, The Mercury News, "Paris Jackson says Michael Jackson was murdered and she was raped at age 14," 24 Jan. 2017 ACOG recommends vaginal delivery for its lower infection rates, fewer anesthetic complications and shorter hospital stays. Alison Bowen, chicagotribune.com, "Chicago hospitals working to reduce C-sections," 15 May 2017 Ketamine itself is known to have anesthetic properties—memory loss, pain relief, trances—at high rates of injection. Sarah Rense, Esquire, "Wanna Get High? Try Eating Chicken.," 27 June 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

An epidural is an anesthetic delivered through a catheter to treat pain relief during childbirth. Matt Mcnulty, PEOPLE.com, "New Mom, 18, Says Hospital Left Epidural Tube in Her Back For Days," 2 July 2019 Now, researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital are eyeing the fish’s poison as a potential new anesthetic that could one day replace opioid pain drugs with all their flaws. Martin Finucane, BostonGlobe.com, "Boston Children’s researchers look to puffer fish as source of possible replacement for opioids," 12 June 2019 Squirmy young children are especially challenging to work with, and aren’t good candidates for local anesthetic and a mild sedative like Valium, Silert said. Cat Ferguson, The Mercury News, "In wake of East Bay child’s death, dental group releases new guidance on anesthesia," 10 June 2019 Esketamine is related to ketamine, an anesthetic that has also been studied to help with treatment-resistant depression. Korin Miller, SELF, "What You Need to Know About Esketamine, the First Nasal Spray Approved to Treat Depression," 7 Mar. 2019 The drug, a nasal spray that manufacturer Johnson & Johnson has branded Spravato, is a close chemical relation to ketamine, an anesthetic that is known for its heady effects on the brain. Peter Loftus, WSJ, "FDA Approves Controversial Drug for Depression," 5 Mar. 2019 Rather than opioids like oxycodone, hydrocodone or fentanyl, Stader said, doctors used safer and less addictive alternatives, like ketamine and lidocaine, an anesthetic commonly used by dentists. John Daley, Washington Post, "Ten ERs In Colorado Tried To Curtail Opioids And Did Better Than Expected," 23 Feb. 2018 As for how it's actually done, Joyce says, generally, a local anesthetic is used to numb the area and control bleeding. Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "A Man Had Part of His Ear Cut Out in a Controversial “Conch Removal” Procedure," 28 Mar. 2019 The two men, donor and recipient, locked eyes before the anesthetic kicked in. Kyle Swenson, Washington Post, "'A cruel harvest of the poor': Israeli allegedly behind human organ black market arrested in Cyprus," 8 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'anesthetic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of anesthetic

Adjective

1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1845, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for anesthetic

Last Updated

23 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for anesthetic

The first known use of anesthetic was in 1823

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More Definitions for anesthetic

anesthetic

noun

English Language Learners Definition of anesthetic

medical : a drug that causes a person to lose feeling and to feel no pain in part or all of the body

anesthetic

adjective
an·​es·​thet·​ic | \ ˌa-nəs-ˈthe-tik How to pronounce anesthetic (audio) \

Kids Definition of anesthetic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of, relating to, or capable of producing loss of feeling in all or part of the body an anesthetic cream

anesthetic

noun

Kids Definition of anesthetic (Entry 2 of 2)

: something that produces loss of feeling in all or part of the body

anesthetic

adjective
an·​es·​thet·​ic
variants: or chiefly British anaesthetic \ ˌan-​əs-​ˈthet-​ik How to pronounce anaesthetic (audio) \

Medical Definition of anesthetic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : capable of producing anesthesia anesthetic agents
2 : of, relating to, or caused by anesthesia an anesthetic effect anesthetic symptoms

Other Words from anesthetic

anesthetically or chiefly British anaesthetically \ -​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce anaesthetically (audio) \ adverb

anesthetic

noun
variants: or chiefly British anaesthetic

Medical Definition of anesthetic (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance that produces anesthesia

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