Comparative haemodynamic effects of lidocaine, mexiletine, and disopyramide

J. Beltrame, P. E. Aylward, R. J. McRitchie, J. P. Chalmers

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The effect of intravenous boluses of lidocaine (5 mg/kg), mexiletine (3.5 mg/kg), and disopyramide (5 mg/kg) on mean arterial pressure (MAP), heart rate (HR), cardiac output (CO), total peripheral resistance, left ventricular end-diastolic pressure, and peak rate of change of left ventricular pressure (peak LV dP/dt) were assessed in the conscious rabbit. Plasma levels for the three drugs corresponded to the human therapeutic range 3 min after administration. All three drugs had negative inotropic effects and reduced HR. Lidocaine reduced peak LV dP/dt by 26%, mexiletine by 41%, and disopyramide by 53%. The three drugs had quite different effects on CO as a result of differences in their actions on peripheral blood vessels: disopyramide caused a 21% fall in CO, associated with a significant vasoconstriction; mexiletine did not lower CO, as it caused a substantial vasodilation; and lidocaine did not produce any substantial change in either CO or vascular resistance. Cardiac autonomic blockade did not alter these changes. These results confirm that disopyramide has a marked cardiodepressant effect, and demonstrate that, although lidocaine depresses myocardial contractility in the conscious rabbit, it has little effect on other haemodynamic parameters. The experiments also show that mexiletine is a more profound negative inotrope than lidocaine, but that, as it produces a significant fall in MAP and thus a reduction in afterload, the CO is maintained.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-490
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1984


  • Antiarrhythmic
  • Disopyramide
  • Haemodynamics
  • Lidocaine
  • Mexiletine


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