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August 1956

Drug Therapy (Mecamylamine) of Hypertension: III. Results with Mecamylamine, a Completely Absorbed Ganglionic Blocking Agent

Author Affiliations


From the Departments of Pharmacology and Medicine, Baylor University College of Medicine, and the Cardiac Clinic of the Jefferson Davis Hospital, the Hermann Hospital, and the Medical Service of the Veteran's Administration Hospital.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1956;98(2):187-210. doi:10.1001/archinte.1956.00250260061008

Ganglionic blocking agents appear to be the most potent therapeutic agents for reducing the blood pressure in patients with severe hypertension. However, the orthostatic effect and the variability in blood pressure response to currently available ganglionic blocking agents are the most serious limiting factors in the use of these agents and may completely prohibit their use in some patients. Concurrent administration of rauwolfia, which depresses the sympathetic nervous system in the brain, partially stabilizes the blood pressure response. However, even then extreme variability frequently exists, apparently due to incomplete and variable absorption of these agents (hexamethonium and pentolinium) from the gastrointestinal tract.*

Recently another long-acting gangionic blocking agent has become available for clinical trial.† This compound, mecamy- lamine,‡ is a secondary amine (rather than a quaternary compound) which is completely absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract. For this reason it has been investigated as a therapeutic agent for reducing the blood

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