Apart from its inotropic property, milrinone has vasodilator, anti-inflammatory and antithrombotic effects that could assist in the reversal of septic microcirculatory changes. This paper investigates the effects of milrinone on endotoxemia-related microcirculatory changes and compares them to those observed with the use of norepinephrine.
After skinfold chamber implantation procedures and endotoxemia induction by intravenous Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide administration (2 mg.kg-1), male golden Syrian hamsters were treated with two regimens of intravenous milrinone (0.25 or 0.5 μg.kg-1.min-1). Intravital microscopy of skinfold chamber preparations allowed quantitative analysis of microvascular variables. Macro-hemodynamic, biochemical, and hematological parameters and survival rate were also analyzed. Endotoxemic non-treated animals, endotoxemic animals treated with norepinephrine (0.2 μg.kg-1.min-1), and non-endotoxemic hamsters served as controls.
Milrinone (0.5 μg.kg-1.min-1) was effective in reducing lipopolysaccharide-induced arteriolar vasoconstriction, capillary perfusion deficits, and inflammatory response, and in increasing survival. Norepinephrine treated animals showed the best mean arterial pressure levels but the worst functional capillary density values among all endotoxemic groups.