(Science: drug) a cardiac drug used for cardiac arrest from ventricular fibrillation, ventricular tachycardia, asystole, or pulseless electrical activity; extreme hypotension; bradycardia and heart block.
pharmacologic action: 1. Beneficial mainly due to alpha stimulation – increases systemic vascular resistance and improves coronary and cerebral blood flow. 2. Value of beta stimulation is controversial – increases myocardial electrical activity and strength of contraction, but also increases myocardial oxygen requirements and automaticity.
Dose: cardiac arrest: Recommended: 1 mg iv push every 3-5 min Intermediate: 2-5 mg iv push every 3-5 min Escalating: 1 mg, 3 mg, 5 mg iv push 3 min apart High: 0.1 mg/kg iv push every 3-5 min.
continuous infusion for bradycardia and severe hypotension: 2 – 10 mcg/min.
epinephrine can be delivered via the endotracheal tube. Increase dose 2-2.5 times iv dose.
potential complications: hypertension and tachycardia, arrhythmias, especially ventricular ectopy, myocardial ischemia.
a catecholamine secreted by the adrenal medulla in response to stress (trade name Adrenalin); stimulates autonomic nerve action.