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Table 1 Summary of four clinical trials evaluating the effects of β-adrenergic blockade therapy in patients with sepsis

From: Sepsis-induced cardiac dysfunction and β-adrenergic blockade therapy for sepsis

Reference number Generic name of β-blocker Method of administration Dose of drug Duration of therapy Effects on hemodynamics Mortality
61 Propranolol Continuous iv infusion 5 mg for 2–3 h, followed by 5 mg for 6–12 h 8–15 h HR↓
Cardiac output↓
Blood pressure↑
Urinary output↑
No control
65 Esmolol Continuous iv infusion 6–22 mg/min (dose to reduce HR by 20%) 3 h HR↓
Cardiac output↓
Hepatic blood flow→
No data
66 Metoprolol with milrinone Enteral administration 25–47.5 mg/day (target range of 65–95 bpm) 48 h HR↓
Cardiac output→
Catecholamine dose↓
28-day mortality: 33%
67 Esmolol Continuous iv infusion Median dose of 100 mg/h (dose to maintain HR from 80 to 94 bpm) Until ICU discharge or death HR↓
Cardiac index→
Mean blood pressure→
Norepinephrine dose↓
28-day mortality:
Control 80.5%
Esmolol 49.4%
  1. bpm beats per minute, HR heart rate, ICU intensive care unit, iv intravenous, SVI stroke volume index