Epinephrine (Epi) disposition in the human body was investigated in asthmatic and control subjects. After intravenous infusion of labeled catecholamines, asthmatics excreted less label than controls but the ratio of unchanged to changed catecholamines was similar in both groups. Further studies investigated retention of Epi in the lung after a bolus injection of labeled Epi and inulin. While in the controls the apparent volume of distribution of Epi was larger than that of inulin, in asthmatics the volumes were similar. The distribution volumes of both Epi and inulin were larger in asthmatics than in controls and the mid-expiratory maximal flow correlated negatively with both volumes. The results indicate that disposition of Epi is altered in bronchial asthma and may be related to pathological processes in the lung.

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