Karlsberg RP. DeWood MA. DeMaria AN. Berk MR. Lasher KP. Comparative efficacy of short-term intravenous infusions of milrinone and dobutamine in acute congestive heart failure following acute myocardial infarction.  Milrinone-Dobutamine Study Group. Clinical Cardiology. 1996;19(1):21-30.


    The purpose of this study was to compare the hemodynamic and clinical effects of milrinone, a vasodilating and positive inotropic agent, with those of dobutamine in patients with congestive heart failure (CHF) following acute myocardial infarction (AMI).  Thirty-three patients in Killip classification II or III within 12 h to 5 days after AMI were randomized in a multicenter, open-label clinical trial to receive a 24-h infusion of milrinone or dobutamine.  Drugs were titrated to achieve at least a 30% increase in cardiac index (CI) from mean baseline or at least a 25% decrease in mean pulmonary capillary wedge pressure (MPCWP) from baseline.  Both drugs improved CI, MPCWP, and other hemodynamic parameters.  Criteria for decrease in MPCWP were met by 94% (15/16) of the milrinone-treated patients and 57% (8/14) of dobutamine-treated patients (p = 0.03). Both groups met the minimum efficacy criterion for CI.  Maximal reduction in MPCWP over 0-3 h was greater in the milrinone group (-53.2%) than in the dobutamine group (-31.0%; p < or = 0.01); reductions were sustained over 24 h.  Both drugs improved echocardiographic global ejection fraction and were generally well tolerated.  The short-term infusion of milrinone may have a role in the management of CHF following AMI, especially when the aim is the rapid reduction of pulmonary congestion.