Temporal effects of an infusion of dopexamine hydrochloride in horses anesthetized with halothane

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Abstract / Description of output

Objective-To evaluate the hemodynamic effects of a 60-minute infusion of dopexamine in horses anesthetized with halothane.

Animals-7 adult Thoroughbreds.

Procedure-Measurements of left ventricular function obtained by transesophageal Doppler echocardiography and cardiac catheterization.

Results-Infusion of dopexamine (4 mu g/kg of body weight/min) significantly increased heart rate, cardiac output, maximal rates of increase and decrease of left ventricular pressure, and maximal acceleration and maximal velocity of aortic blood flow. Left ventricular ejection time significantly increased, and pre-ejection period decreased during the infusion. Cardiac output, maximal rate of increase of left ventricular pressure, and maximal acceleration continued to increase as the infusion progressed. Right ventricular end-diastolic pressure was significantly decreased after 20 minutes of infusion and decreased progressively throughout the remaining time of infusion. Many hemodynamic variables, including right ventricular end-diastolic pressure, had not returned to control values 30 minutes after the infusion was discontinued. A number of undesirable adverse effects were observed in horses receiving dopexamine infusion; during administration, profuse sweating occurred in every horse, in 6 horses, recovery from anesthesia was associated with excitement and violent shivering. Colic developed in 2 horses within 3 hours of recovery.

Conclusions-Dopexamine (4 mu g/kg/min) does not achieve a peak effect on many hemodynamic variables within a short period of commencing administration, and the effects of infusion may persist for extended periods after drug administration is discontinued.

Clinical Relevance-Dopexamine has a hemodynamic profile suited to treatment of low cardiac output in anesthetized horses; however, at the dosage rate studied (4 mu g/kg/min), its administration was associated with a number of undesirable adverse effects which could preclude its clinical use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)516-523
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Veterinary Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1997


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