BioScience Trends. 2018;12(4):382-388. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2018.01074)

Bolus administration of ephedrine and etilefrine induces transient vasodilation just after injection in combined epidural and general anesthesia patients: A randomized clinical study.

Wajima Z, Shiga T, Imanaga K


Hypotension commonly accompanies combined epidural and general anesthesia, and intravenous bolus ephedrine and etilefrine are widely used to correct hypotension. We have noticed that systemic vascular resistance (SVR) transiently decreases just after intravenous bolus administration of these drugs. The goal of the present study was to investigate whether bolus administration of these drugs decrease SVR just after intravenous administration in combined epidural and general anesthesia patients. We investigated 40 patients who were scheduled for elective abdominal surgery. Patients were chosen as subjects if their systolic arterial pressure decreased by 20% or to <100 mmHg at 30 min after the induction of general anesthesia. Baseline hemodynamic values were recorded, and after ephedrine 10 mg injection or etilefrine 2 mg injection (equipotent), the parameters were recorded again at 0.5 min and once each min for the next 5 min thereafter. The 40 patients were enrolled into the ephedrine (n = 20) or etilefrine (n = 20) treatment groups. Patient characteristics were comparable in both groups. After ephedrine injection, SVR decreased significantly at the 1-min time point, whereas after etilefrine injection, SVR decreased significantly at the 0.5- to 2-min time points compared with baseline values. SVR at the 0.5- to 1-min time points was lower in the etilefrine versus the ephedrine group. Both drugs transiently decreased SVR after intravenous injection, but etilefrine decreased SVR much more than ephedrine, indicating that more vasodilation occurred after the injection of etilefrine than after ephedrine. It is thus important to recognize the different characteristics of these drugs.

KEYWORDS: Ephedrine, etilefrine, hemodynamics, systemic vascular resistance, vasodilation

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