Vasoactive drugs in obstetrics: A review of data obtained by doppler and color doppler methods: Invited reviews

Pentti Jouppila, Juha Räsänen, Seppo Alahuhta, Riitta Jouppila

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective: We did a literature review of the hemodynamic effects of different vasoactive agents, as assessed by Doppler and color Doppler methods. Methods: The review included reports dealing with the Doppler method assisted by basic ultrasound real-time, M-mode, and color Doppler techniques. Results and Conclusions: Maternal vasoactive drugs (labetalol, dihy-dralazine, pindolol, nifedipine), anesthesia, and maternal position do not hinder the uteroplacental and fetal circulation to the extent that clinical complications would ensue. However, if these factors are strong enough, an increased vascular resistance in the uterine arteries does appear without any immediate compromises in fetal hemodynamics. Some regulatory changes do occur, however, in the fetal cerebral and renal arteries and in fetal myocardial contractility. This signifies that some vasoactive drugs may compromise fetal hemodynamics, especially in fetuses with poor blood or oxygen supply before treatment. One good example of the fetal hemodynamic changes caused by maternal drug is the vasoconstriction of fetal ductus arteriosus during maternal intake of indo-methacin. and demonstrated by the Doppler technique. The circulatory safety of both routinely used vasoactive agents and new drugs can now be tested with the Doppler method more reliably than before. Increased understanding of uterine and fetal hemodynamic regulation in many different clinical conditions and their treatment schedules has benefited perinatal practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-275
Number of pages15
JournalHypertension in Pregnancy
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1995


  • Color Doppler
  • Doppler
  • Drugs
  • Pregnancy
  • Prenatal
  • Ultrasonography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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