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Saudi J Anaesth. 2011 Apr;5(2):162-6. doi: 10.4103/1658-354X.82784.

Comparative study of dopamine and norepinephrine in the management of septic shock.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Chattrapati Shahuji Maharaj Medical University, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India.



The objective was to compare the ability of norepinephrine and dopamine in reversing the hemodynamic and metabolic abnormalities of septic shock using Edwards Vigileo Monitor with Flotrac Sensor.


Prospective randomized control study.


Fifty consecutive patients presenting with hyperdynamic septic shock who fulfilled the inclusion criteria were randomly allocated to either group I or group II. The goal of therapy was to achieve and maintain for 6 hours, all of the following - systolic blood pressure (SBP) >90 mmHg, systemic vascular resistance index (SVRI) >1800 dynes.s/cm(5)m(2), cardiac index (CI) >4.0 lt/min/m(2), index of oxygen delivery >550 ml/min/m(2), index of oxygen uptake >150 ml/min/m(2). The patients in group I were started on dopamine infusion at 10 μg/kg/min which was increased by 2.5 μg/kg/min, every 15 minutes till the goals were achieved. The patients in group II received norepinephrine infusion started at a dose of 0.5 μg/kg/min with a dose increment of 0.25 μg/kg/min, every 15 minutes till the goals were achieved.


Post-treatment heart rate showed an increase in the mean value in group I patients and a decrease in group II patients. The post-treatment mean SBP and SVRI in group II was significantly higher than that in group I. Patients in group I showed a significantly higher increase in post-treatment CI and index of oxygen delivery compared to patients in group II. Nineteen out of 25 patients responded to the treatment in group II while only 10 out of 25 responded in group I.


Norepinephrine was more useful in reversing the hemodynamic and metabolic abnormalities of hyperdynamic septic shock compared to dopamine.


Dopamine; Vigileo monitor; hyperdynamic septic shock; norepinephrine

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