SYMPATHOMIMETIC AND SYMPATHOLYTIC AGENTS: MULTIFUNCTIONAL ESSENTIAL DRUGS
*Kushal Nandi, Sakasi Halder, Souhrit Saha and Dr. Dhrubo Jyoti Sen
Sympathomimetics are drugs that mimic the stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system. They are classified as directly acting (act directly on α or β receptors), indirectly acting (act by providing more norepinephrine to act on α or β receptors), or mixed acting (act by both mechanisms). These drugs are used clinically to treat glaucoma, anaphylactic shock, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, hypotension, hypertension, heart failure, nasal congestion, premature labour, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, narcolepsy, and acute or chronic asthma. The α or β adrenergic antagonists block or attenuate the effect of sympathomimetics on α or β receptors. Alpha blockers are used clinically to treat hypertension and benign prostatic hyperplasia. Beta blockers are used clinically to treat ischemic heart disease, essential hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, congestive heart failure, glaucoma, hyperthyroidism, and surgical removal of pheochromocytoma, nonparkinsonian tremor, migraine headache (prophylaxis), and a wide variety of anxiety situations. A sympatholytic (or sympathoplegic) drug is a medication that opposes the downstream effects of postganglionic nerve firing in effector organs innervated by the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). They are indicated for various functions; for example, they may be used as antihypertensives. They are also used to treat anxiety, such as generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder and PTSD. In some cases, such as with Guanfacine, they have also shown to be beneficial in the treatment of ADHD.
Keywords: Sympathomimetic, Sympatholytic, Alpha Blocker, Beta Blocker, CNS, ANS.
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