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February 1959

Hypotension as a Complication of Promazine Therapy

Author Affiliations

U. S. A. F.

From the Department of Internal Medicine, the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Dallas, Texas.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1959;103(2):219-223. doi:10.1001/archinte.1959.00270020047005

The use of promazine as a tranquilizing agent in the treatment of a variety of disease states has achieved widespread currency. Recent reports have appeared concerning its efficacy in the management of patients with both acute and chronic mental disturbances,1,2 including alcoholism3,4 and delerium tremens,5 as well as its use as a predelivery sedative.6

A prime factor leading to the extensive use of this drug has been the generally accepted belief that removal of the chloride ion from chlorpromazine leads to diminished toxicity without loss of therapeutic potency. It has been frequently stated that use of the drug is not attended by serious side-effects.1-6 However, isolated reports of toxic complications, including agranulocytosis,7-9 convulsions, and dermatitis,10 have appeared. Another complication, marked hypotension, which is more properly considered an anticipated pharmacologic effect, has been observed 3,10 but is said to be "slight," 6 "moderate," 1 and, in fact, "not encountered."5 Though mention

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