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J Perinat Med. 1988;16(1):45-9.

High permeability pulmonary edema (ARDS) during tocolytic therapy--a case report.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, University Hospital, Zurich, Switzerland.


A 26 year old previously healthy woman who was treated with fenoterol for premature labor at 30 gestational weeks developed pulmonary edema requiring intubation and mechanical ventilation. Vaginal delivery was accomplished with forceps after tocolytic therapy had been stopped. Right heart catheterization with measurement of pulmonary wedge pressure did not reveal left ventricular failure. Protein determination in lung edema fluid provided evidence of increased pulmonary capillary permeability. Recovery was rapid and ventilatory support was stopped after 36 hours. It is suggested that the infusion of beta-sympathomimetic drugs may alter the permeability of the alveolar-capillary membranes which together with triggering factors such as fluid overload might lead to clinically manifest pulmonary edema.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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