Labetalol does not lengthen asystole during electroconvulsive therapy

Pinhas N. Dannon*, Iulian Iancu, Shmuel Hirschmann, Peter Ross, Ornah T. Dolberg, Leon Grunhaus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Labetalol, a combined α- and β-adrenergic blocker is often used to attenuate the transient increases in heart rate and blood pressure that accompany electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). It has been suggested that labetalol should not be administered during ECT without the protection provided by anticholinergic medications, because of its potential severe bradycardic effects. We present our experience with 32 patients from all age groups who received labetalol without anticholinergic treatment during ECT. None of the patients demonstrated adverse bradycardic effects. We conclude that administration of labetalol during ECT does not routinely require premedication with anticholinergic drugs and does not lengthen asystole.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-250
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of ECT
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Asystole
  • Cardiovascular complications
  • Electroconvulsive therapy
  • Labetalol


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