May 27, 2016
Recommended Topic Related To:


"A US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory panel gave near-unanimous support for approval of the Absorb GT1 bioresorbable vascular scaffold (BVS) system (Abbott Vascular).

If approved, Absorb would be the first drug-eluting coro"...



Dopamine Side Effects Center

Medical Editor: Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

Last reviewed on RxList 5/1/2015

Dopamine (dopamine hydrochloride) is a catecholamine drug that acts by inotropic effect on the heart muscle (causes more intense contractions) that, in turn, can raise blood pressure. At high doses, Dopamine may help correct low blood pressure due to low systemic vascular resistance. Dopamine is used to treat hypotension (low blood pressure), low cardiac output, and reduced perfusion of body organs due to shock, trauma, and sepsis. Dopamine is available in only the generic form. Side effects of Dopamine may include irregular heartbeats, nausea, vomiting, anxiety, headache, chills, goosebumps, and shortness of breath.

Dopamine is packaged in 200, 400 and 800 mg/5 ml vials and must be diluted before it is administered by intravenous methods, and almost always in a hospital by trained personnel or by Emergency Medical Technicians that are trained in its use. Initial doses of Dopamine are started as an intravenous drip at a rate of 5 micrograms per Kg per minute (5 mcg/Kg/min). Then the drug can be increased at a rate of about 5 - 10 mcg increments to obtain the correct dose to treat the individual patient's symptoms. If rates above 50 mcg/Kg/min are needed, renal output problems may occur; some renal effects may begin at 20 mcg/Kg/min. Dopamine is not for home use. Serious side effects include heart arrhythmias that can be life-threatening, kidney damage, and gangrene of digits sometimes seen at the higher doses. Other medications such as monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) and anesthetic agents can markedly increase these serious cardiac side effects while vasoconstrictors may enhance gangrene development. Reports of phenytoin use with Dopamine have resulted in hypotension (low blood pressure) in some patients. Caution is urged for dopamine use in pregnancy and breastfeeding women; there is very little data available to support usage. The same cautionary situation exists for the use of Dopamine in pediatric patients.

Our Dopamine Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is Patient Information in Detail?

Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.

Dopamine in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Tell your caregivers at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • chest pain;
  • fast, slow, or pounding heartbeats;
  • painful or difficult urination, blood in your urine;
  • weakness, confusion, swelling in your feet or ankles, urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • weak or shallow breathing;
  • feeling like you might pass out, even while lying down;
  • burning, pain, or swelling around the IV needle;
  • cold feeling, numbness, or blue-colored appearance in your hands or feet; or
  • darkening or skin changes in your hands or feet.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • headache;
  • feeling anxious;
  • nausea, vomiting; or
  • chills, goosebumps.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Dopamine (Dopamine Hydrochloride)

What is Prescribing information?

The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.

Dopamine FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
(Adverse Reactions)


The following adverse reactions have been observed, but there are not enough data to support an estimate of their frequency.

Cardiovascular System

ventricular arrhythmia (at very high doses)
ectopic beats
anginal pain
cardiac conduction abnormalities
widened QRS complex

Respiratory System


Gastrointestinal System


Metabolic/Nutritional System


Central Nervous System


Dermatological System



Gangrene of the extremities has occurred when moderate to high doses were administered for prolonged periods or in patients with occlusive vascular disease receiving low doses of dopamine (dopamine hydrochloride) HCl.

A few cases of peripheral cyanosis have been reported.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Dopamine (Dopamine Hydrochloride)

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration


You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Heart Health

Get the latest treatment options.

Atrial Fibrillation Quiz