Perfusion of Naloxone Through the Fourth Cerebral Ventricle Reverses the Circulatory and Hypnotic Effects of Halothane in Dogs

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To determine whether naloxone when perfused through the cerebroventricular system would modify the circulatory and hypnotic effects of halothane, the authors studied its effect in six trained dogs. Naloxone, 20 µg/ml, was perfused through the fourth cerebral ventricle in three and through the third cerebral and lateral ventricles in three other dogs when awake and during halothane anesthesia (0.75–0.82 vol per cent in oxygen). Blood pressure, heart rate, and circulatory responses to bilateral occlusion of the carotid arteries were measured. The state of consciousness was evaluated by the animals' behavior and the EEG. Arterial hypotension, bradycardia, depressed baroreceptor responses, and EEG synchronization associated with halothane anesthesia were reversed when naloxone was perfused through the fourth ventricle. To maintain comparable depths of anesthesia the halothane concentration had to be doubled during naloxone perfusion. No change in the circulatory or hypnotic effects of halothane occurred when the third ventricle was perfused with naloxone. It is concluded that opiate receptors in structures bordering the fourth cerebral ventricle may be important modulators of inhalational anesthesia.

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