Sedation Services

Our team consists of specially trained physicians, nurses, and Child Life Specialists all dedicated to providing excellence in Pediatric Sedation. Every physician caring for your child is board certified in Pediatric Critical Care Medicine and will be monitoring your child throughout the procedure.

Our Pediatric Sedation Service began in 1996, and we provide sedation exclusively to infants, children, and adolescents at multiple locations throughout Greenville Memorial Hospital including MRI, Radiology, and The Bi-Lo Charities Children’s Cancer Center. With more than 20 years of experience, we routinely care for approximately 2,000 pediatric sedation patients every year, so rest assured we will provide the best care available for your child.

Our Pediatric Sedation Service is an Institutional Member of the Society for Pediatric Sedation (, and we participate in the Pediatric Sedation Research Consortium. This is the leading organization in the advancement of pediatric sedation by promoting safe, high quality care, innovative research and quality professional education.

Our Mission

Our goal is to provide a family centered approach to pediatric sedation in order to make your child’s procedure safe, comfortable, and as anxiety free as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Society for Pediatric Sedation has an excellent parent resource that answers many commonly asked questions. We’ve included some of those questions here, but for more information, visit

What is sedation and why does my child need it?

Many tests and medical procedures require children to hold still in a certain position for an extended period of time. They may also cause varying amounts of discomfort and/or anxiety. Sedation helps facilitate the procedure by keeping the child still, but also helps prevent pain and anxiety during the procedure. Usually, the child is “asleep” during the procedure and most of the time will not remember the procedure at all.

Most commonly, sedation is given through an IV and acts very rapidly. However, not all children require IV sedation. Our team will meet with you and your child to develop a sedation plan to optimize safety and comfort. At that time, we will also discuss different types of sedation offered, risks, advantages, and alternatives. You will be given ample time to have your questions answered.

Is sedation the same as general anesthesia?

No. With general anesthesia, the patient is completely unresponsive to all stimuli. Typically, patients under general anesthesia need assistance with breathing such as placement of a breathing tube and use of a breathing machine (respirator). When a patient is sedated, they are able to breath on their own without assistance.

Is sedation safe?

Yes. We have over 20 years of experience and sedate many children every day. Some children need simple supportive measures like oxygen, suctioning or repositioning, but it is extremely rare for a child under our care to need assistance with breathing. However, we are prepared and capable to handle any medical situation.

What sedation medicines do you use?

There are many sedative medications. Our team will assess your child and develop a plan to optimize both safety and comfort. We will discuss in detail any sedatives chosen, and why, during your appointment.

Are there any long term side effects of pediatric sedation?

There is extensive ongoing discussion and research about this question. SmartTots is a collaborative organization leading the way in researching this issue. Extensive information is available at:

Why can my child not eat?

An empty stomach helps prevent vomiting that can occur due to medicines or procedures. Vomiting could increase the risk of getting fluid in the lungs while sedated, so it is very important to follow these fasting guidelines.

Fasting can be challenging for young children, but is very safe. You can help your child by encouraging clear liquids up to 2 hours prior to the procedure. It is also recommended to keep food and drink out of sight and reach of your child while fasting.

Will my child need to be sedated?

We encourage you to allow us to help prepare your child to attempt some procedures without sedation. Our team of nurses and Child Life specialists are experts in helping children accomplish this.

There are many factors involved in deciding whether sedation is required:

  • Age and developmental level of your child
  • Length of test or procedure
  • Motion sensitivity of test/procedure
  • Amount of discomfort or anxiety anticipated
  • Your child’s medical condition

What is considered a clear liquid?

Water, Juice (apple, white grape and pear), Gatorade, Popsicles, Jell-O, Tea, Kool-Aid, Pedialyte

What do we bring with us?


  • Comfort items (blanket, stuffed animals, etc.)
  • Diapers, wipes


  • Comfort and/or distraction items
  • Favorite sippy cup
  • Drink/Snack


  • Comfort and/or distraction items
  • Drink/Snack
  • Extra pair of undergarments

School Age and Adolescents

  • Comfort and/or distraction items
  • Drink/Snack

Other Helpful Information

  • Only 2 adults per patient
  • We encourage child care for siblings as they cannot be left alone or accompany the patient to procedure
  • Please remove all nail polish from patient’s nails