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Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 1989;36(4):357-60.

The biochemical effects of high-dose inhaled salbutamol in patients with asthma.

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1
Department of Clinical Pharmacology, Ninewells Hospital Medical School, Dundee.

Abstract

We have studied the biochemical effects of high doses of inhaled salbutamol in 14 asthmatic patients age 38 years, FEV1 62%. Cumulative doubling doses of inhaled salbutamol were given every 20 min as follows: 100 micrograms, 200 micrograms, 500 micrograms, 1000 micrograms, 2000 micrograms, 4000 micrograms. Plasma glucose, potassium, and magnesium were measured at each step of the dose-response curve. Salbutamol produced significant hypokalaemic and hyperglycaemic effects, but no significant change in magnesium. There were linear log-dose responses for both glucose (r = 0.58) and potassium (r = -0.46). There were wide individual variations in maximum responses to salbutamol 4000 micrograms (as means and 95% confidence intervals): delta glucose 1.46 (0.83 to 2.09) mmol/l, delta potassium -0.38 (-0.64 to -0.12) mmol/l. Thus, hypokalaemic and hyperglycaemic effects may occur with doses of salbutamol similar to those currently used for nebulizer therapy (2.5-5 mg). We postulate that during acute exacerbations of airflow obstruction these changes may be accentuated and become clinically relevant.

PMID:
2737227
DOI:
10.1007/bf00558295
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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