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Dezocine. A preliminary review of its pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic properties, and therapeuti

Dezocine. A preliminary review of its pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic properties, and therapeuti

  1. Anonymous
    Drugs. 1989 Aug;38(2):226-48.
    O'Brien JJ, Benfield P.

    Abstract
    Dezocine is an analgesic agent with opioid agonist and antagonist activity. After parenteral administration of therapeutic doses it is approximately equipotent with morphine, and has proved at least as effective an analgesic as morphine, pethidine (meperidine) and butorphanol in moderate to severe postoperative pain. However, preliminary pharmacodynamic data indicate that the ceiling of analgesic activity of dezocine occurs at a higher level of analgesia than that of reference agonist/antagonist agents. Also, the drug exhibited a morphine-like degree of anaesthetic-sparing activity in animals. Although long term data are very limited, single doses of dezocine are well tolerated, with mild and transient sedation and gastrointestinal upset the principal adverse effects. As with some other agonist/antagonist analgesics, a 'ceiling' effect to dezocine-induced respiratory depression occurs with increasing dosage, beyond which further depression has not been observed. In single analgesic doses, however, dezocine is a slightly more potent respiratory depressant than morphine. Clinically important haemodynamic changes have not been observed with usual analgesic doses of dezocine. As an agonist/antagonist opioid, the dependence liability of dezocine would be expected to be lower than that of pure agonist opioids, but extended clinical use is required before more definitive conclusions can be drawn in this regard. Unlike older drugs of its type, dezocine produced opiate-like subjective effects and was identified as morphine-like by drug abusers. Thus, provided the promising conclusions of currently available clinical studies are confirmed with its wider use, dezocine should be a useful additional agent for the treatment of moderate to severe postoperative pain.