A Blast From the Past: Revival of Angiotensin II for Vasodilatory Shock

Brittany D. Bissell, Kelsey Browder, Matt McKenzie, Alexander H. Flannery

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Objective: To review and summarize data on angiotensin II (AT-II), approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in December 2017 to increase blood pressure in adults with septic or other distributive shock. Data Sources: A PubMed/MEDLINE search was conducted using the following terms: (angiotensin ii OR angiotensin 2) AND (shock) from 1966 to February 2018. Study Selection and Data Extraction: A total of 691 citations were reviewed with only relevant clinical data extracted. Data Synthesis: AT-II is a peptide hormone with a multitude of physiological effects—namely, vasoconstriction of venous and arterial smooth muscle. The priority approval granted by the FDA was secondary to a phase 3 study of patients receiving at least 0.2 µg/kg/min of norepinephrine or equivalent for vasodilatory shock. Compared with placebo, AT-II had a significantly higher rate of response, defined as a mean arterial pressure of 75 mm Hg or an increase of 10 mm Hg. No significant difference was found in death by day 28. Conclusions: AT-II is a newly available vasoactive agent with a novel mechanism for the treatment of distributive shock. Further research is needed to define its exact role in therapy of shock states, identify patients most likely to benefit, and further study its safety profile in critical illness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)920-927
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Pharmacotherapy
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2018.


  • angiotensin ii
  • critical care
  • drug development and approval
  • hemodynamics
  • sepsis
  • vasoconstrictors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'A Blast From the Past: Revival of Angiotensin II for Vasodilatory Shock'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this