Ephedrine HCL Powder (ih-fed-rin) is one of the four active components of the herb Ephedra. It is able to induce fat loss via increasing the amount of fat available for fuel as well as by increasing heat expenditure. It has been implicated in increasing the metabolic rate by up to 5% in humans.
Ephedrine HCL Powder also interacts with muscle cells, increasing heat expenditure in them as well as fat cells. It can also prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue to a small degree.
Ephedrine is highly synergistic with caffeine, and for this reason is commonly found in something called an ECA stack (Ephedrine, Caffeine, and Aspirin).
Side effects include an increase in blood pressure that goes away with cessation and increases in some blood parameters (Glucosamine, insulin) that also go away with cessation of use. It has been reported to be a hyperstimulant when taken in doses above what is recommended.
Ephedrine is well studied and a fairly reliable compound for short- to medium-term weight loss (less than 6 months) and mild performance improvements, usually in trained individuals. However, it does not work under all situations; longer-term weight loss and effects in untrained individuals have not been studied much and sometimes produce negative results. While it has been implicated in weight reduction independent of exercise and diet changes, efficacy is maximized with minimal side-effects when ephedrine is combined with diet and exercise.
Ephedrine HCL Powder (Hydrochloride) Dosage and Administration
Administer orally as a fixed-combination preparation.176 177198
For solution and drug compatibility information, see Compatibility under Stability.
Administer ephedrine sulfate (Akovaz) by direct IV (“bolus”) injection.200 252 Must dilute commercially available injection prior to IV administration.200 May prepare a 5-mg/mL solution by diluting 1 mL of the 50-mg/mL injection concentrate with 9 mL of 0.9% sodium chloride injection or 5% dextrose injection.200
Vials are for single-use only; discard unused portions.200
Available as ephedrine hydrochloride or ephedrine sulfate; dosage expressed in terms of the salt.176 178198 200
Hypotension During Anesthesia
Ephedrine HCL Powder sulfate: Usual dose of 0.5 mg/kg or 16.7 mg/m2 every 4–6 hours has been administered.178However, ephedrine sulfate injection not FDA-labeled for use in pediatric patients.200 252
Ephedrine HCL Powder (hydrochloride) or sulfate self-medication in children ≥12 years of age: 12.5–25 mg every 4 hours as needed for treatment of mild symptoms of intermittent asthma; administer in fixed combination with guaifenesin.176 198
Ephedrine sulfate: Usual dose of 0.5 mg/kg or 16.7 mg/m2 every 4–6 hours has been administered.178However, ephedrine sulfate injection not FDA-labeled for use in pediatric patients.200 252
Hypotension During Anesthesia
Ephedrine HCL Powder sulfate: Initially, 5–10 mg by IV bolus injection; administer additional bolus doses as needed (up to a total dose of 50 mg) to achieve desired BP response.200
Other IV dosage regimens have been recommended.178 250