Intravenous inotropic therapy

What is Intravenous Inotropic Therapy?

Intravenous inotropic therapy is a medical treatment used to treat heart failure. It involves intravenously administering drugs that increase the heart's contraction force so that it can pump more blood throughout the body.

Heart failure is classified as either acute or chronic. Acute heart failure is when a sudden weakening of the heart's pumping power occurs. Chronic heart failure is when the heart's pumping power is decreased over a long period of time, typically for at least two months.

How Does Intravenous Inotropic Therapy Work?

Intravenous inotropic therapy works by increasing the heart's ability to contract. The drugs used in intravenous inotropic therapy increase the sensitivity of the heart to calcium, which makes it easier for the heart to pump more forcefully. As a result, the amount of oxygen-rich blood passing through the body is increased.

While intravenous inotropic therapy can be effective at increasing the heart's ability to pump, it is not without risks. It is important to discuss the possible risks and side effects with a physician before starting treatment.

Types of Drugs Used in Intravenous Inotropic Therapy

The following drugs are commonly used in intravenous inotropic therapy:

  • Dobutamine
  • Dopamine
  • Epinephrine
  • Milrinone

These drugs are typically administered through a plastic tube inserted through a vein in the arm or leg. The intravenous inotropic therapy may need to be continued several times per day or for a few days until the heart's pumping power has improved.

Risks and Side Effects of Intravenous Inotropic Therapy

Although intravenous inotropic therapy can be an effective treatment option for heart failure, there are some risks and side effects associated with it. Common side effects include an irregular heartbeat, chest pain, and anxiety.

More serious side effects can include prolonged and painful urination, kidney failure, sudden death, and unconsciousness. It is important to discuss the risks and side effects of intravenous inotropic therapy with a physician before treatment is started.