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It is a nondepolarizing medium-term muscle relaxant and works by curarimimetic action - the competitive antagonism with acetylcholine of the autonomic cholinergic receptors. With the correct intravenous dosage the effects last around 45 minutes and it is used with general anaesthesia in surgery for muscle relaxation and as an aid to intubation or ventilation. It does not have sedative or analgesic effects.
Side effects include moderately raised heart rate and thereby arterial pressure and cardiac output, excessive salivation, apnea and respiratory depression, rashes, flushing and sweating. The muscular relaxation can be dangerous in the seriously ill and it can accumulate leading to extended weakness.
It is also used as one component of a lethal injection used in capital punishment in some parts of the USA. Because pancuronium bromide has no analgesic effects but prevents the body from displaying pain, Amnesty International has objected to its use in lethal injections on the grounds that it "may mask the condemned prisoner's suffering during the execution"  and thereby lead observers to conclude that lethal injection is painless, or less cruel than other forms of execution.
Its empirical formula is:
- C35H60Br2N2O 4
Its structural name is 3α, 17β - diacetoxy - 5α - androstan - 2β, 16β - ylene bis [1 - methylpiperidinium] dibromide
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