Effects of morphine sulfate on human coronary blood flow

David M. Leaman, Stephen H. Nellis, Robert Zelis, John M. Field

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations


Because morphine causes coronary vasoconstriction in conscious dogs, human coronary blood flow was measured with the thermodilution technique before and after administration of morphine sulfate, 0.2 mg/kg body weight (maximum 15 mg) intravenously, in 10 patients to determine if the canine experience is clinically applicable. Coronary blood flow increased from a baseline value of 104.4 ± 13.4 (mean ± standard error of the mean) to 113.0 ± 17.4 ml/min (difference not significant) 15 minutes after the administration of morphine. Baseline coronary vascular resistance was 1.14 ± 0.19 mm Hg/ml/min; 15 minutes after morphine administration the resistance value was 1.02 ± 0.17 (P < 0.025). There was no significant change between baseline values and values 15 minutes after morphine administration in systemic mean arterial pressure (98.2 ± 5.3 to 92.8 ± 4.7 mm Hg); heart rate (69.5 ± 3.5 to 72.6 ± 3.4 beats/min), left ventricular ejection time (0.345 ± 0.009 to 0.342 ± 0.007 second) or tension-time index (2,324 ± 128 to 2,291 ± 149 mm Hg/sec per min). The slight coronary vasodilation noted after morphine administration in this study is in marked contrast to the significant coronary vasoconstriction demonstrated in the unanesthetized dog.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)324-326
Number of pages3
JournalThe American journal of cardiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1978

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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