This article is a short review of vasoactive drugs which are in use in todays clinical practice. In the past century, development of vasoactive drugs went through several phases. All of these drugs are today divided into several groups, depending on their place of action, pharmacological pathways and/or effects on target organ or organ system. Hence, many different agents are today in clinical practice, we have shown comparison between them. These agents provide new directions in the treatment of cardiovascular compromise, suggesting that the primary goal of therapy is to produce a vasodilatory effect of the circulation rather than to reverse hemodynamic failure by using inotropic agents, with their inherent risks and side effects.
Key words: vasoactive agents, inotropic agents, levosimendan, phosphodiesterase III inhibitors