Dopexamine is a new vasodilator with a combination of dopamine receptor and beta 2 adrenoreceptor agonist properties. Its haemodynamic effects were assessed after dose titration and during infusion for up to 24 hours in 15 patients with heart failure after acute myocardial infarction. At the initial titration a dose of 1 micrograms/kg/min produced a 25% decrease in the systemic vascular resistance index and a 32% increase in cardiac index. Stroke volume index and heart rate increased by 23% and 9% respectively. Left ventricular filling pressures and mean blood pressures were not affected. The short term effects were well sustained during the long term infusion and tolerance did not develop. Administration of dopexamine to patients with heart failure after acute myocardial infarction augments cardiac performance at rest.
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