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All about: Dobutamine

Big Image Pronouncation: (doe-BYOOT-uh-meen)
Class: Vasopressor

Trade Names:
Dobutamine Hydrochloride
- Injection 12.5 mg/mL

Mechanism of Action


Stimulates beta 1 -receptors in heart, causing more complete and forceful contractions (inotropy) without significantly increasing heart rate or BP.



Methylation and conjugation.


t ½ is 2 min. Urinary excretion of metabolites.


1 to 2 min.


Up to 10 min.

Indications and Usage

Treatment of cardiac decompensation caused by organic heart disease or cardiac surgical procedures.

Unlabeled Uses

Congenital heart disease in children undergoing diagnostic cardiac catheterization.


Idiopathic hypertrophic subaortic stenosis.

Dosage and Administration


IV infusion 2.5 to 10 mcg/kg/min; titrate to desired response; increase in heart rate more than 10% may develop in rate greater than 20 mcg/kg/min; rates up to 40 mcg/kg/min are rarely used. Duration of therapy up to 72 h without decrease in clinical effectiveness may be used.

General Advice

  • Administer by IV infusion only. Use electronic infusion device to monitor infusion rate.
  • Reconstitution/dilution is done in two stages.
  • First, more concentrated solution can be kept under refrigeration for 48 h or at room temperature for 6 h.
  • Before administration, solution is further diluted to typical concentration of 0.25 to 1 mg/mL (250 to 1,000 mcg/mL). Final concentration should not exceed 5 mg/mL. This solution should be used within 24 h.
  • Solution may have pink color, because of slight oxidation, but this effect does not indicate loss of potency.


Do not freeze solution because crystallization may occur.

Drug Interactions


May antagonize beta receptor-stimulating activity of dobutamine.

Furazolidone, methyldopa, rauwolfia alkaloids

Hypertension may result.


May increase pressor response.

Halogenated hydrocarbon anesthetics

May increase risk of arrhythmias by sensitizing cardiac tissue to sympathomimetic agents.

Tricyclic antidepressants

May potentiate effect of dobutamine; use combination with caution.


Chemically incompatible with sodium bicarbonate or other alkaline solutions.

Laboratory Test Interactions

None well documented.

Adverse Reactions


Increased systolic BP; increased heart rate; chest pain; increased number of premature ventricular beats.


Headache; tingling sensations; paresthesia.


Nausea; vomiting.




Phlebitis; local inflammation after infiltration; leg cramps.



Monitor vital signs, ECG, cardiac output, pulmonary capillary wedge pressure, central venous pressure and urinary output carefully throughout infusion. Monitor patency and placement of IV catheter to reduce risk of extravasation and phlebitis.


Safety not established.




Safety and efficacy not established.

Special Risk Patients

Use with extreme caution after myocardial ischemia. Avoid use in uncorrected hypovolemic states unless used as temporary emergency measure to maintain coronary and cerebral flow.

Sulfite Sensitivity

Use caution in sulfite-sensitive individuals; some preparations contain sodium bisulfite.

CV effects

May greatly increase BP and heart rate, especially with preexisting hypertension. Dose reduction may reverse effects. May precipitate or exacerbate ventricular ectopic activity.


Mild hypokalemia may occur.



Excessive hypertension, tachycardia, nausea, vomiting, tremor, headache, chest pain.

Patient Information

  • Instruct patient to report these symptoms to health care provider: pain or discomfort at IV site, any anginal pain.

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