European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology

, Volume 27, Issue 2, pp 127–130 | Cite as

Papaverine disposition in cardiac surgery patients and the effect of cardiopulmonary bypass

  • W. G. Kramer
  • A. Romagnoli


Cardiac surgery involving cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) causes substantial physiologic changes which may potentially alter the pharmacokinetic properties of drugs used during and after the procedure. Studies with fentanyl have implied a relationship between prolonged elimination half-lives following CPB and decreased liver perfusion during and after the procedure. To further test this hypothesis, the effects of CPB on the pharmacokinetics of papaverine, a coronary vasodilator currently being added to the cardioplegic solution to prevent vasospasm, were studied. The drug was given to two groups of patients, one (n=6) undergoing surgery with and one (n=5) without CPB, the latter serving as controls. Plasma papaverine concentrations declined biexponentially in the control patients with a mean elimination half-life of 1.30±0.25 h, total plasma clearance of 13.8±3.75 ml/min/kg, volume of distribution of 1.52±0.45 l/kg and volume of distribution, steady-state, of 0.992±0.530 l/kg. For the CPB group, only half-life was estimated, and averaged 2.77±0.28 h, significantly greater (p<0.01) than that in the controls. These results further confirm the increased half-lives seen with other hepatically cleared drugs following CPB and have implications in the clinical management of patients given drugs eliminated in this manner.

Key words

papaverine cardiopulmonary bypass pharmacokinetics cardiac surgery patients 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. G. Kramer
    • 1
    • 2
  • A. Romagnoli
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PharmaceuticsUniversity of HoustonHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Cardiovascular AnesthesiologyTexas Heart InstituteHoustonUSA

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