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A sudden, severe decrease in blood pressure can put a person’s life in danger. Patients who experience such a drop might be treated with a number of medications that mimic the effects of adrenaline, which occurs naturally in the body but is quickly used up. These medications, including Aramine®, increase adrenergic nerve activity, speeding up the heart, dilating the blood vessels and raising blood pressure.
Aramine® is most often used to both prevent and treat a severe drop in blood pressure after a patient is given spinal anesthesia. Spinal anesthesia is given to patients in order to block the transmission of neural signals from peripheral nerves to the central nervous system, preventing the signals that transmit pain from reaching the brain. High doses of spinal anesthetics have been known to decrease blood pressure and heart rate, which is why doctors may administer a drug such as Aramine® during spinal anesthesia.
Patients may also experience a drop in blood pressure when there is severe blood loss, shock, or an anaphylactic reaction to a medication. Aramine® is used to increase blood pressure in these cases, though it is almost always used as a secondary medication. In all cases, the medication is administered as an injection administered into a muscle, a blood vessel or even under the skin.
Treatment with Aramine® produces an effect similar to that produced naturally by the body’s adrenal system. The medication works quickly, usually within ten minutes, and increases heart rate, blood pressure and blood flow. It is also common for a patient to feel more alert and anxious. These symptoms may be uncomfortable but they do not pose any risk to a patient’s health.
Arrhythmia, or an irregular heartbeat, is a common side effect of Aramine®. Though most arrhythmias are benign, a doctor will monitor the patient after he is given the medication to make sure that this arrhythmia does not cause a problem. Doctors also monitor the patient’s blood pressure to make sure it does not rise to high. If blood pressure does increase beyond acceptable levels, there are medications available that counteract the effects of Aramine®. Patients who are taking certain antidepressants may have a stronger response to the drug and are usually started on a smaller dose which can be increased as needed.