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Article
March 6, 1991

Potential Complications of High-Dose Epinephrine Therapy in Patients Resuscitated From Cardiac Arrest

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Medicine (Drs Callaham and Barton) and Division of Clinical Pharmacology (Dr Kayser), University of California, San Francisco.

From the Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Medicine (Drs Callaham and Barton) and Division of Clinical Pharmacology (Dr Kayser), University of California, San Francisco.

JAMA. 1991;265(9):1117-1122. doi:10.1001/jama.1991.03460090065034
Abstract

Adults resuscitated from nontraumatic cardiac arrest who received intravenous epinephrine in doses chosen by the treating physician and who survived at least 6 hours were studied to determine if high-dose epinephrine produced more complications than standard-dose. A total of 68 patients were enrolled and evaluated for postresuscitation complications attributable to epinephrine, using a two-tailed t test, and contingency analysis. The 33 patients receiving high-dose epinephrine and 35 patients receiving standard-dose epinephrine were similar in demographics and variables known to affect outcome. There was no difference in potential complications between groups except serum calcium, which was 1.97 mmol/L (SD, 0.20) in the high-dose epinephrine group and 2.10 (SD, 0.20) in the standard-dose group. Hospital discharge rates (18% in the high-dose vs 30% in the standard-dose group) and neurological status on discharge were not significantly different. High-dose epinephrine did not produce increased direct complications in this cardiac arrest population compared with standard-dose epinephrine.

(JAMA. 1991;265:1117-1122)

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