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Myron Yaster, MD

Director of Pediatric Pain Service
Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine

See Research on Pubmed

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Main Location

The Johns Hopkins Hospital

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  • Director of Pediatric Pain Service
  • Richard J. Traystman Distinguished Professor
  • Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine
  • Professor of Neurological Surgery
  • Professor of Pediatrics


Interventional Pain Management

Research Interests

New methods of preoperative sedation


Dr. Myron Yaster is a professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine, neurological surgery and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He is a pioneer in the development of various new methods of preoperative sedation in children involving new drugs, novel drug delivery techniques and parental presence in the operating room at the induction of anesthesia.

Dr. Yaster is the inaugural Richard J. Traystman Professor in Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine.

He received his undergraduate degree from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. He earned his M.D. from the State University of New York-Downstate and completed residencies in anesthesiology at the University of Pennsylvania and pediatrics at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh – UPMC. Dr. Yaster performed a fellowship in pediatric anesthesiology at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. He joined the Johns Hopkins faculty in 1983.

Dr. Yaster started the Pediatric Pain Service at Johns Hopkins and was its director until 2005. The Pediatric Pain Service treats approximately 3,000 patients annually and is rated among the best worldwide. He was also a founding member of the Society for Pediatric Anesthesia.

Dr. Yaster has spearheaded various methods of pain management in infants, children and adolescents involving new drugs and techniques. Most recently, he developed a protocol to counteract the side effects of common opioids by using ultra low doses of naloxone, a well-known antidote for narcotic overdose. Given in very small amounts, the drug counteracts opioidal side effects without canceling out their main action: eliminating pain.

He is a member of multiple professional societies, including the Society for Critical Care Medicine, the Society for Pediatric Anesthesia and the American Academy of Pediatrics, where he holds a fellowship. His two textbooks, Pain in Infants, Children, and Adolescents and The Pediatric Pain Management and Sedation Handbook are considered the gold standard textbooks in the field.


  • English
  • Hebrew


Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research Academy of Research Mentors in Anesthesiology, 2011

Congenital Cardiac Anesthesia Society, 2007

Fellow, American Academy of Pediatrics, 1996

International Trauma Anesthesia and Critical Care Society, 1993

Association of University Anesthesiologists, 1991

International Association for the Study of Pain, 1989

Society for Pediatric Anesthesia, 1986

Society of Critical Care Medicine, 1983

American Society of Anesthesiology, 1979

International Anesthesia Research Society, 1979

Additional Resources

Additional Resources +
  • Education +


    • SUNY Downstate - College of Medicine (Brooklyn NY) (1977)


    • University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine / Anesthesiology (Philadelphia PA) (1981)
    • Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh - UPMC / Pediatrics (Pittsburgh PA) (1979)


    • The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia / Pediatric Anesthesiology (Philadelphia PA) (1982)


    • General, American Board of Pediatrics / Pediatrics (1986)
    • General, American Board of Anesthesiology / Anesthesiology (1983)
  • Research & Publications +

    Research Summary

    Dr. Yaster has been at the forefront of studies that demonstrated that the newborn infant responds to pain. He and his colleagues at Johns Hopkins have proven that this pain can be prevented by the appropriate use of anesthetics (general and regional) and analgesic drugs. Clearly pain, anxiety and discomfort (both physical and psychological) are not limited to the newborn and do not begin and end with the induction and conclusion of surgery and anesthesia.

    He is a pioneer in the development of various new methods of pain management in infants, children and adolescents involving new drugs, novel drug delivery techniques and system management. Dr. Yaster and his team have condition-specific pain management protocols for trauma, surgery and chronic diseases, such as sickle cell anemia and cystic fibrosis.

    Current research projects include:

    1. Techniques to minimize or prevent opioid-induced side effects using ultra-low doses of opioid antagonists or peripheral opioid antagonists
    2. Using proteomics and other molecular biologic techniques to study tolerance, dependence, withdrawal, and the interaction of the opioid and glutamate, both in acute and chronic pain models
    3. Investigating the impact of pain and its management in target populations, including infants and children, patients with cystic fibrosis, patients with skeletal connective tissue diseases, and adult patients with brain cancer or who have undergone craniotomy surgery

    Selected Publications View all on PubMed

    1. Maxwell LG, Buckley GM, Kudchadkar SR, Ely E, Stebbins EL, Dube C, Morad A, Jastaniah EA, Sethna NF, Yaster M. “Pain management following major intracranial surgery in pediatric patients: a prospective cohort study in three academic children's hospitals.” Paediatr Anaesth. 2014 Nov;24(11):1132-1140. doi: 10.1111/pan.12489. Epub 2014 Jul 29.
    2. Mai CL, Firth PG, Ahmed Z, Rodriguez S, Yaster M. “The development of a specialty: an interview with Dr. Mark C. Rogers, a pioneering pediatric intensivist.” Paediatr Anaesth. 2014 Sep;24(9):912-8. doi: 10.1111/pan.12497. Epub 2014 Jul 28. PMID: 25065470 [PubMed - in process]
    3. Shay JE, Kattail D, Morad A, Yaster M. “The postoperative management of pain from intracranial surgery in pediatric neurosurgical patients.” Paediatr Anaesth. 2014 Jul;24(7):724-33. doi: 10.1111/pan.12444.
    4. Kudchadkar SR, Yaster M, Punjabi NM. “Sedation, sleep promotion, and delirium screening practices in the care of mechanically ventilated children: a wake-up call for the pediatric critical care community.” Crit Care Med. 2014 Jul;42(7):1592-600. doi: 10.1097/CCM.0000000000000326.
    5. Kozlowski LJ, Kost-Byerly S, Colantuoni E, Thompson CB, Vasquenza KJ, Rothman SK, Billett C, White ED, Yaster M, Monitto CL. “Pain prevalence, intensity, assessment and management in a hospitalized pediatric population.” Pain Manag Nurs. 2014 Mar;15(1):22-35. doi: 10.1016/j.pmn.2012.04.003. Epub 2012 Jun 8.

    Clinical Trials

    Optimal Dose of Prophylactic Naloxone in Reducing Opioid-Induced Side Effects in Children/Adolescents

    IVPCA in the Management of Pain Following Major Intracranial Surgery

  • Academic Affiliations & Courses +
  • Activities & Honors +


    Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society for Pediatric Anesthesia, 2014

    Excellence in Research Award, American Society for Anesthesiologists, 1997

    Berne Award, American Physiological Society, 1996

    Laerdal Prize, Society of Critical Care Medicine, 1991

    Professional Activities

    Medical School Council, Johns Hopkins University, 2005 - 2009

    Associate Professor Promotions Committee, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, 2003 - 2009

    State of Maryland Advisory Council on Pain Management, 2002 - 2004

    Procedural Sedation Committee, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, 2000

    Section on Anesthesiology Executive Committee, American Academy of Pediatrics, 1997 - 2000

    Committee on Pediatric Anesthesia, American Society of Anesthesiologists, 1992 - 2000

    Board of Directors American Academy of Pediatrics Anesthesiology Section, 1987 - 1992

    Board of Directors, Society for Pediatric Anesthesia, 1992

    Peer reviewer, Anesthesiology

    Peer reviewer, Anesthesia and Analgesia

    Peer reviewer, Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine

    Peer reviewer, Critical Care Medicine

    Peer reviewer, Journal of Pediatrics

    Peer reviewer, Pain

    Peer reviewer, Pediatrics

    Peer reviewer, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management

    Peer reviewer, Journal of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Management

  • Videos & Media +
  • Events +
  • Contact & Locations +


    The Johns Hopkins Hospital
    600 N. Wolfe Street
    Hospital Main Entrance - Sheikh Zayed Tower
    Baltimore, MD 21287
    Phone: 410-955-2393
    Appointment Phone: 410-955-2393
    Fax: 410-614-2911
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    • Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine - Pediatric Anesthesia and Critical Care Medicine

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