Catecholamines in Patients with Heart Failure

  • W. Mäurer
  • R. Tschada
  • J. Manthey
  • A. Ablasser
  • W. Kübler
Conference paper


  1. 1.

    In a group of 57 patients with heart disease, 24-h urinary excretion of norepinephrine, epinephrine and their O-methylated metabolites, normetanephrine and metanephrine, was found significantly increased in class III an IV (NYHA). The urinary excretion of dopamine did not show any significant change.

  2. 2.

    In 52 patients with heart failure, plasma levels of norepinephrine and epinephrine at rest were increased mainly in those patients, in whom cardiac index was depressed below the critical value of 2 liters/min/m2. There was no strong relationship between left ventricular ejection fraction and plasma catecholamines.

    In 11 patients with congestive cardiomyopathy and severe heart failure, increase in cardiac index due to therapeutic intervention with dihydralazine or/and dopamine revealed significant decrease in plasma catecholamines.

    During exercise, in 12 patients with impaired left ventricular function an exaggerated increase in plasma catecholamines could be observed, probably as consequence of peripheral underperfusion due to low cardiac output. There was no strong relationship between plasma catecholamines and plasma levels of lactate.

  3. 3.

    In 17 patients suffering from severe chronic aortic regurgitation, cardiac tissue stores of norepinephrine, normetanephrine and epinephrine were significantly decreased. Myocardial dopamine level did not change.

    The transformation of dopamine to norepinephrine seems to be the rate limiting step of myocardial norepinephrine synthesis. A defect of norepinephrine uptake represents an important mechanism of cardiac catecholamine depletion.



Left Ventricular Ejection Fraction Tyrosine Hydroxylase Cardiac Index Severe Heart Failure Plasma Norepinephrine 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag, Berlin, Heidelberg 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. Mäurer
  • R. Tschada
  • J. Manthey
  • A. Ablasser
  • W. Kübler

There are no affiliations available

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