What Does Barbiturate Mean?
A barbiturate is a drug derived from barbitruric acid. This acid is synthetically produced by combining carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, and oxygen.
Drugs in the barbiturate group act as a depressant on the central nervous system (CNS), slowing down brain function. As a result, barbiturates are sometimes used as sedatives. The drugs may also be used as anticonvulsants, hypnotics, and anesthetics.
Barbiturates are addictive and cause physical dependency. An overdose of barbiturates can result in coma or death. The symptoms of withdrawal can also be life-threatening. Some common barbiturates are phenobarbital and pentobarbital. Sodium pentothal is a fast acting barbiturate sometimes used as an anesthetic.
Barbiturates are controlled substances under the U.S. Controlled Substances Act with individual types of barbiturates listed on Schedules II, III, and IV.