05 Aug 2019



The drug dopamine works both as a hormone and a neurotransmitter to support the systematic working of brain. The substance in the medication works naturally in the body by improving the blood flow to kidneys and also strengthening the pumping of heart. Certain medical conditions in which the drug is used includes heart attack, trauma, organ failure, depression to help the patient recover from shock. The drug comes in the form of injection which a colorless sterile solution, used to balance the shock syndrome caused due to cardiac or cognitive failures in human body.


    • Dopamine injection is not recommended for children.
    • In adults also, the drug is given with Intravenous (IV) infusion.
    • Adult dosages:

Low dose: 1 to 5 mcg/kg/minute
Intermediate dose: 5 to 15 mcg/kg/minute
High dose: 20 to 50 mcg/kg/minute


  • A light-headed feeling, like you might pass out
  • Chest pain
  • Fast, slow, or pounding heartbeats
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cold feeling
  • Numbness
  • Blue-colored appearance in hands or feet
  • Darkening of skin in hands or feet
  • Headache
  • Anxiety
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Chills
  • Goose bumps


  • Angina (Chest pain)
  • Palpitation
  • Cardiac conduction abnormalities
  • Hypotension
  • Hypertension
  • Vasoconstriction


  • Amitriptyline
  • Amoxapine
  • Clomipramine
  • Desipramine
  • Doxepin
  • Ergonovine
  • Furazolidone
  • Imipramine
  • Isocarboxazid
  • Nortriptyline
  • Phenelzine
  • Procarbazine
  • Selegiline
  • Tranylcypromine

Dopamine has major interactions with 25 different drugs.


  • acarbose
  • acebutolol
  • bitolterol
  • chlorpropamide
  • ethotoin
  • haloperidol
  • metformin
  • nateglinide
  • pramlintide
  • sitagliptin
  • venlafaxine

Dopamine has moderate interactions with 160 different drugs.


  • The patient should be fully treated with hypovolemia before administering dopamine.
  • The drug injection should be inserted in a larger vein to avoid the risk of extravasation of adjacent tissues.
  • Patients who have a history of diabetes or cold injury must be treated with utmost care and any change in skin color due to drug must be reported immediately.
  • Proper monitoring is needed in case of using the injection with adrenergic agents like urine flow.


  • Use of Dopamine in pregnancy especially during postpartum period might lead to rupturing of blood vessel.
  • Animal studies show no risk but human studies are not available to administer the use of drug during pregnancy. Only after supervision, this drug can be used to avoid any damage to fetus.
  • Do not nurse while on drug course, as Dopmine may transfer through breast milk and may harm a newborn.


  • Since the medication is a potent drug, it must be ensured that it is diluted with intravenous infusion under doctor’s supervision.
  • The drug cannot be added to alkaline diluents solutions as it become ineffective.
  • Patients being treated with MAO inhibitors should receive only a lower dosage of the drug.
  • Keep out of reach of children. In case of overdose, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Center immediately.
  • Instead of abrupt discontinuation of the drug, it should be done by lowering the dosage because otherwise it may lead to hypotension.

The Ultimate Pharma Guide

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