Hypotension and Cardiopulmonary Arrest Associated With Concurrent Haloperidol and Propranolol Therapy

Harold E. Alexander Jr, MD; Kathleen McCarty, MD; Martin B. Giffen, MD
JAMA. 1984;252(1):87-88. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350010053025.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

HALOPERIDOL exerts its antipsychotic effect presumably through potent blockade of central dopamine receptors1 and has caused hypotension in some patients.2 Propranolol hydrochloride is a β-adrenergic receptor blocking drug that is widely used in treating hypertension. A review of the literature does not disclose adverse effects in patients from a combination of haloperidol and propranolol. We report herein a patient who had three episodes of hypotension and two episodes of cardiopulmonary arrest after taking concurrent oral doses of haloperidol and propranolol.

Report of a Case  A 48-year-old white woman with a 27-year history of schizophrenia was first admitted to our hospital in 1980. At that time, the patient was treated with haloperidol, 20 mg/day, for an acute exacerbation of her illness. Her symptoms resolved rapidly. The patient was also noted to have hypertension and was treated with a low-sodium diet and with trichlormethiazide, 4 mg/day, which controlled her hypertension. In


Sign In to Access Full Content

Don't have Access?

Register and get free email Table of Contents alerts, saved searches, PowerPoint downloads, CME quizzes, and more

Subscribe for full-text access to content from 1998 forward and a host of useful features

Activate your current subscription (AMA members and current subscribers)

Purchase Online Access to this article for 24 hours




Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Sign In to Access Full Content

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.