Which medications in the drug class Beta2 Agonists are used in the treatment of Hypoventilation Syndromes?

Updated: Jul 22, 2021
  • Author: Jazeela Fayyaz, DO; Chief Editor: Guy W Soo Hoo, MD, MPH  more...
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Beta2 Agonists

Bronchodilators act to decrease the muscle tone in small and large airways in the lungs, thereby increasing ventilation. These drugs include beta adrenergic agonists, methylxanthines, and anticholinergic agonists.

Albuterol (Proventil HFA, Ventolin HFA, ProAir HFA)

Albuterol is a beta agonist for the reversal of bronchospasm. It relaxes bronchial smooth muscle by its action on beta2 receptors, with little effect on cardiac muscle contractility.

Ipratropium (Atrovent)

Ipratropium is an anticholinergic bronchodilator that is chemically related to atropine.

Theophylline (Elixophyllin Elixir, Theo-24)

Theophylline potentiates exogenous catecholamines, stimulates endogenous catecholamine release, and stimulates diaphragmatic muscular relaxation, which, in turn, stimulates bronchodilation.

The drug's popularity has decreased because of theophylline's narrow therapeutic range and frequent toxicity. The therapeutic range is 10-20 mg/dL, but bronchodilation may require near-toxic (>20 mg/dL) levels. The clinical efficacy is controversial, especially in an acute setting

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