Exertional heat stroke induced by amphetamine analogues. Does dantrolene have a place?

Anaesthesia. 1993 Dec;48(12):1057-60. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2044.1993.tb07526.x.


There are increasing numbers of patients admitted to hospital as a result of ingesting amphetamine-like drugs. The most severe cases exhibit hyperthermia, rhabdomyolysis, coagulopathy and renal failure. We describe six such patients with varying severity of intoxication, and have reviewed the recent literature with particular reference to the use of dantrolene. One of our patients died but the others all survived. There is little evidence that dantrolene influenced the outcome in patients reported to date. We believe that a controlled trial should be carried out in amphetamine-related hyperthermia before the use of dantrolene becomes widespread.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • 3,4-Methylenedioxyamphetamine* / analogs & derivatives*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Blood Coagulation Disorders / chemically induced
  • Dancing
  • Dantrolene / therapeutic use*
  • Designer Drugs*
  • Female
  • Fever / chemically induced
  • Fever / drug therapy
  • Heat Exhaustion / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • N-Methyl-3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine
  • Renal Insufficiency / chemically induced
  • Rhabdomyolysis / chemically induced
  • Substance-Related Disorders / drug therapy*


  • Designer Drugs
  • 3,4-Methylenedioxyamphetamine
  • Dantrolene
  • N-Methyl-3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine