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# Dopamine (i.v.) is used in acute heart failure (cardiogenic shock) to increase blood pressure and increase cardiac output
* It has a short half-life (1 min)
* At high doses dopamine has potent peripheral vasoconstrictor effects (alpha-receptor stimulation), in addition to its inotropic effects
* Low dose dopamine has a renal artery dilating effect and may improve sodium and water excretion in patients refractory to loop diuretics
* When systolic pressure is greater than 90 mm Hg, nitroprusside can be added to reduce ventricular filling pressure and reduce afterload
* i.v. furosemide should also be administered to reduce edema
* Levodopa and ibopamine, analogs of dopamine that can be administered orally, have been shown to improve symptoms in some patients, but can exhibit arrhythmogenic side-effects and tachyphylaxis
i know dh mum is having a hard time with all of this. she tends to look at the negatives, when we were told dh had a 33% of full recovery, 33% of surviving with long term meds and 33% chance of dying shorty after diagnosis, she focused on thinking he would die, and was prepared to plan his funeral, whilst i hovered between ful lrecovery and meds.