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April 7, 1951


Author Affiliations

New York

David, Josephine and Winfield Baird Fellow (Dr. Gluck).; Research Fellow, National Institute of Health (Dr. Greiner).; From the Department of Pharmacology of Cornell University Medical College, the Cardiovascular Research Unit of the Beth Israel Hospital and the Cardiac Service of the Hospital for Joint Diseases.

JAMA. 1951;145(14):1049-1052. doi:10.1001/jama.1951.02920320023006

The organic mercurial diuretics are usually administered by intravenous or intramuscular injection. The intravenous route has in recent years become less popular because of serious reactions. Perivenous infiltration sometimes resulted in thrombophlebitis. Also, several reports of sudden deaths have appeared in the literature.1 Although possible improvement in the methods of manufacture and the combination of these compounds with theophylline have reduced their irritant properties2 so that sloughs are now uncommon, considerable irritant action still remains, and standard writings on the subject warn against the subcutaneous injection or fail to mention it as an acceptable route of administration.3 While intramuscular injection is not entirely free from pain or other discomforts in many patients, and in some these are fairly severe, this is now generally the method of choice.

A blind-test study which we made a few years ago4 showed that the compounds vary in the intensity of