Angiotensin

Angiotensin is a naturally occurring octapeptide with a half-life of less than 2 min. It is a potent vasoconstrictor, acting on specific receptors in arteriolar smooth muscle, at presynaptic receptors in peripheral sympathetic nerves and the adrenal medulla to increase catecholamine synthesis and release, and by centrally mediated stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system. It has no myocardial effects, and so it may cause fewer arrhythmias than the adrenergic agents, but it causes a fall in cardiac output with a resultant fall in tissue perfusion despite the rise in blood pressure. Therefore its use is not recommended, even in extreme forms of hyperkinetic shock.

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