Dezocine (Dalgan) is a synthetic aminotetralin derivative with potent agonist-antagonist effects. The onset of activity and potency as an analgesic are comparable to those of morphine. Although the drug requires glu-curonidation during metabolism, patients with hepatic insufficiency clear it normally. The main route for clearance is the kidney. Thus, patients with renal dysfunction are prone to buildup of dezocine over time. As an antagonist, dezocine is more potent than pentazocine. As an agonist, dezocine produces analgesia and respiratory depression (which is readily reversed by naloxone), but unlike pentazocine, it has little if any effect on the cardiovascular system.
Dezocine is indicated as an analgesic for moderate to severe pain. In addition, it shows promise in chronic pain states, such as with victims of severe burns. Contraindications and adverse effects of the drug are similar to those described for morphine. No tendency toward abuse has been demonstrated thus far.
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