The official journal of
EUROPAD - European Opiate Addiction Treatment Association
WFTOD - World Federation for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence
Editor: Icro Maremmani, MD - Pisa, Italy, EU
Associate Editors:
Thomas Clausen, MD - Oslo, Norway
Pier Paolo Pani, MD - Cagliari, Italy, EU
Marta Torrens, MD - Barcelona, Spain, EU
Statistical Editor:
Mario Miccoli, PhD - Pisa, Italy, EU

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Heroin Addiction and Related Clinical Problems: 2009, 11, 4 (pages: 35 - 40)

Cardiovascular Complications of Cocaine Use

Gambarana C.

Summary: As cocaine use has become prevalent, an increasing number of reports of cocaine-associated morbidity and mortality, largely because of central nervous system and cardiovascular toxicity, appeared. Cardiovascular toxicity is broad, and it may also lead to neurological, psychiatric and other organ-specific symptoms. Cocaine may induce myocardial ischemia by increasing myocardial oxygen demand while simultaneously decreasing myocardial oxygen supply. Most of the cardiovascular toxic effects elicited by cocaine are likely related to its ability to selectively bind to the L-type calcium channels and the potassium channels that modulate the Ikr current. In addition, cocaine may promote intracoronary thrombosis in the absence of coronary atherosclerosis. This article briefly reviews the current knowledge regarding the cardiovascular effects of cocaine, providing insight into some of the underpinning mechanisms.

Keywords: adrenergic receptors, monoamine uptake, L-type calcium channels, acute coronary events


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