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Epinephrine

What works?

Learn more about the effects of these drugs. The most reliable research is summed up for you in our featured article.

By breathing

Treats severe asthma attacks… Read more

By injection

Epinephrine injection is used for emergency treatment of severe allergic reactions (including anaphylaxis) to insect bites or stings, medicines, foods,… Read more

Brand names include: Adrenaclick, Adrenalin

Into the nose

Treats nasal congestion or stuffy nose… Read more

Brand names include: Adrenalin

Into the eye

Epinephrine solution is used for mydriasis (dilation or widening the pupil of the eye) during eye surgery. This medicine is to be given only by or under… Read more

Brand names include: Epinal

Drug classes About this
Anaphylaxis Agent, Anesthetic Adjunct, Antiglaucoma, Bronchodilator, Decongestant, Vasopressor
Combinations including this drug

What works? Research summarized

Evidence reviews

Epinephrine for the resuscitation of apparently stillborn or extremely bradycardic newborn infants

There are no trials investigating the effects of epinephrine to try to revive babies who appear to be stillborn or close to death at birth. Some babies are born with a very slow heart beat (extreme bradycardia) or their hearts have stopped beating shortly before birth (apparent stillbirth). Although they may appear to be close to death, it may be possible to revive these babies. Epinephrine is a drug that stimulates the heart and has been used to treat cardiac arrest and bradycardia in people of all ages. However, the review found no trials of the use of epinephrine for reviving newborn babies with extreme bradycardia or whose hearts appear to have just stopped beating. Research is needed into the effects of epinephrine on newborns.

The use of epinephrine (adrenaline) in the management of transient tachypnea of the newborn

Background: Transient tachypnea (abnormally rapid breathing) of the newborn is characterized by high respiratory rate (more than 60 breaths per minute) and signs of respiratory distress (difficulty in breathing); it typically appears within the first two hours of life in infants born at or after 34 weeks' gestational age. Although transient tachypnea of the newborn is usually improves without treatment, it is associated with wheezing syndromes in late childhood. The idea behind using epinephrine for transient tachypnea of the newborn is based on studies showing that medicines called β‐agonists, such as epinephrine, can accelerate the rate of clearance of fluid from small cavities within the lungs called alveoli. This review reported and critically analyzed the available evidence on the effectiveness of epinephrine in the management of transient tachypnea of the newborn.

Nebulized racemic epinephrine for extubation of newborn infants

The use of inhaled nebulized epinephrine after extubation in newborn infants is not supported or refuted by evidence from randomised controlled trials. Following mechanical ventilation, airway swelling and obstruction can occur in newborn infants (especially after prolonged, traumatic or multiple intubations). This may compromise breathing and cause failure of extubation. Because epinephrine can decrease swelling and its effect has been proven in the treatment of croup in infants, it has been used immediately after extubation to prevent breathing problems. The reviewers did not identify any studies that examined clinically relevant outcomes following the use of nebulized epinephrine in newborn infants. They concluded that there is no evidence either supporting or refuting the use of inhaled nebulized epinephrine in newborn infants.

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Summaries for consumers

Epinephrine for the resuscitation of apparently stillborn or extremely bradycardic newborn infants

There are no trials investigating the effects of epinephrine to try to revive babies who appear to be stillborn or close to death at birth. Some babies are born with a very slow heart beat (extreme bradycardia) or their hearts have stopped beating shortly before birth (apparent stillbirth). Although they may appear to be close to death, it may be possible to revive these babies. Epinephrine is a drug that stimulates the heart and has been used to treat cardiac arrest and bradycardia in people of all ages. However, the review found no trials of the use of epinephrine for reviving newborn babies with extreme bradycardia or whose hearts appear to have just stopped beating. Research is needed into the effects of epinephrine on newborns.

The use of epinephrine (adrenaline) in the management of transient tachypnea of the newborn

Background: Transient tachypnea (abnormally rapid breathing) of the newborn is characterized by high respiratory rate (more than 60 breaths per minute) and signs of respiratory distress (difficulty in breathing); it typically appears within the first two hours of life in infants born at or after 34 weeks' gestational age. Although transient tachypnea of the newborn is usually improves without treatment, it is associated with wheezing syndromes in late childhood. The idea behind using epinephrine for transient tachypnea of the newborn is based on studies showing that medicines called β‐agonists, such as epinephrine, can accelerate the rate of clearance of fluid from small cavities within the lungs called alveoli. This review reported and critically analyzed the available evidence on the effectiveness of epinephrine in the management of transient tachypnea of the newborn.

Nebulized racemic epinephrine for extubation of newborn infants

The use of inhaled nebulized epinephrine after extubation in newborn infants is not supported or refuted by evidence from randomised controlled trials. Following mechanical ventilation, airway swelling and obstruction can occur in newborn infants (especially after prolonged, traumatic or multiple intubations). This may compromise breathing and cause failure of extubation. Because epinephrine can decrease swelling and its effect has been proven in the treatment of croup in infants, it has been used immediately after extubation to prevent breathing problems. The reviewers did not identify any studies that examined clinically relevant outcomes following the use of nebulized epinephrine in newborn infants. They concluded that there is no evidence either supporting or refuting the use of inhaled nebulized epinephrine in newborn infants.

See all (50)

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