IRWIN A. BUCHWALD, M.D.
To the editor: In his comprehensive review of drug-induced pulmonary disease, in the December 1972 issue (pp. 977-991), Dr. Rosenow implies that nalorphine hydrochloride is the opioid-narcotic antagonist of choice in the treatment of heroin-induced pulmonary edema. Recent literature (1), however, indicates that naloxone hydrochloride (Narcan®) may well be superior to nalorphine hydrochloride (Nalline®) in the emergency treatment of presumed narcotic-induced respiratory depression. The basis for this contention is the fact that nalorphine aggravates respiratory depression caused by non-opioid drugs such as barbiturates, cannabis, and cocaine; naloxone, on the other hand, will not aggravate non-opioid-induced respiratory depression. In emergency conditions
BUCHWALD IA. Treatment of Narcotic-Depressed Respiration. Ann Intern Med. ;78:461. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-78-3-461_1
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1973;78(3):461.
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