PMID: 4042707Oct 1, 1985

Increase in PaO2 following intravenous administration of propranolol in acutely hypoxemic patients

J L VincentE Contu


To define the effects of beta-blockade therapy on PaO2, arterial blood gas levels were determined before and after therapeutic administration of propranolol in 44 acutely ill patients. With a FIo2 of 0.33 +/- 0.08, the PaO2 increased from 89.6 +/- 3.6 to 95.3 +/- 3.8 mmHg (p less than 0.01), 10 minutes after intravenous administration of 1 to 3 mg of propranolol. Simultaneous hemodynamic measurements obtained in six patients demonstrated a dramatic decrease in venous admixture, associated with decreases in cardiac output and mixed venous Po2. Propranolol administration generally results in a moderate increase in PaO2, which is related to a significant decrease in pulmonary shunt. The clinical implications of these findings are limited by the expected decrease in tissue oxygen delivery after beta-blockade therapy.


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