Dobutamine vs. Levophed

Are Dobutamine and Levophed the Same Thing?

Dobutamine and Levophed (norepinephrine bitartrate) are indicated to treat shock and low blood pressure (hypotension).

Dobutamine is more commonly used to treat heart failure.

Dobutamine and Levophed belong to different drug classes. Dobutamine is a catecholamine and Levophed is a vasoconstrictor.

Side effects of dobutamine and Levophed that are similar include headache and redness or swelling at the injection site.

Side effects of dobutamine that are different from Levophed include increased heart rate and increased blood pressure, ventricular ectopic activity, nervousness, nausea, vomiting, palpitations, and low platelet counts (thrombocytopenia).

Side effects of Levophed that are different from dobutamine include dizziness, weakness, slow heart rate, and breathing difficulty.

Dobutamine may interact with beta-blockers and nitroprusside.

Levophed may interact with blood pressure medications, MAO inhibitors, or antidepressants.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Dobutamine?

Common side effects of Dobutamine include:

  • increased heart rate and increased blood pressure,
  • ventricular ectopic activity,
  • nervousness,
  • headache,
  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • palpitations,
  • low platelet counts (thrombocytopenia), or
  • swelling at the injection site.

Contact your doctor if you have serious side effects of dobutamine including:

What Are Possible Side Effects of Levophed?

Common side effects of Levophed include:

  • dizziness,
  • weakness,
  • headache,
  • slow heart rate,
  • breathing difficulty, or
  • redness and swelling at the injection site.

Serious side effects of Levophed include:

  • pain or burning where the injection is given,
  • sudden numbness/weakness/cold feeling in your body,
  • blue lips or fingernails,
  • urinating less than usual or not at all,
  • trouble breathing,
  • dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, irregular heartbeats, seizure).

What Is Dobutamine?

Dobutamine Injection is a catecholamine indicated when parenteral therapy is necessary for inotropic support in the short-term treatment of adults with cardiac decompensation due to depressed contractility resulting either from organic heart disease or from cardiac surgical procedures.

What Is Levophed?

Levophed (norepinephrine bitartrate) is a vasoconstrictor, similar to adrenaline, used to treat life-threatening low blood pressure (hypotension) that can occur with certain medical conditions or surgical procedures. Levophed is often used during or after CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation).


Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension): Symptoms, Signs, Causes See Slideshow

What Drugs Interact With Dobutamine?

Dobutamine may interact with beta-blockers and nitroprusside. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Dobutamine should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. It is unknown if dobutamine passes into breast milk. If a mother requires dobutamine treatment, breastfeeding should be discontinued for the duration of the treatment.

What Drugs Interact With Levophed?

Levophed may interact with blood pressure medications, MAO inhibitors, or antidepressants. Tell your doctor all medications you use. During pregnancy, Levophed should be used only if prescribed. It is unknown if this medication passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.

How Should Dobutamine Be Taken?

The usual adult dosage of Dobutamine ranges from 50 to 200 g in a 24-hour period, but in most instances an adequate response will be achieved at a dosage of approximately 100 g/24 hours.

How Should Levophed Be Taken?

Levophed is diluted in liquid and given continuously into a large vein (IV infusion), as directed by the doctor. Dosage is based on the patient's condition and response to treatment.


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DailyMed. Dobutamine Product Information.

Pfizer. Levophed Product Information.

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