Methyldopa, an adrenergic-inhibiting compound, has been
used for over 25 years as a safe and effective antihypertensive
agent. The postulated mechanisms for the antihypertensive
action of this compound have been varied and parallel our
broadening knowledge of the role of the adrenergic nervous
system in controlling arterial pressure. This review outlines the
mechanisms of adrenergic control of the circulation and how the
proposed mechanisms of action of methyldopa (ie, dopa decarboxylation, false neurotransmission, inhibition of renin release,
and stimulation of α receptor sites in the brain) seem to account
for the depressor action of the drug. Physiologic effects as well
as immunologic and other clinical effects are also discussed.
(Arch Intern Med 140:954-959, 1980)
Frohlich ED. Methyldopa. Arch Intern Med. 1980;140(7):954–959. doi:10.1001/archinte.1980.00040020954016
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