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alpha-methyl dopa

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Methyl dopa is a centrally-acting antihypertensive drug that is gradually declining in usage. It inhibits decarboxylation of dopa to dopamine. Therapy is associated with reduced concentrations of dopamine, 5 - hydroxytryptamine and noradrenaline in peripheral tissues and the CNS. This drug is associated with a reduction in renin levels.

Indications for the use of methyl dopa include:

  • hypertension, in conjunction with a diuretic
  • hypertensive crisis when an immediate effect is not necessary


  • history of depression
  • active liver disease
  • porphyria
  • phaeochromocytoma
  • increases the CNS toxicity of lithium


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