[en] We studied the effects of intravenous ephedrine on the onset time and the intubating conditions 2 min after a bolus dose of cisatracurium (0.15 mg kg-1). Thirty patients anaesthetized with sufentanil and propofol were randomly divided in 2 groups to receive either ephedrine (70 micrograms.kg-1) or saline, 5 s before propofol. Cisatracurium was administered after loss of consciousness. Neuromuscular block was assessed at the adductor pollicis using accelography. Tracheal intubation was performed 2 min after cisatracurium injection and rated as excellent, good, poor or bad. At intubation, neuromuscular block (% height of control T1) was greater in patients receiving ephedrine (36.1 +/- 25.8% vs 57.9 +/- 25.1%) (mean +/- SD). The frequency of excellent intubating conditions was higher after ephedrine (86.6%) than after saline (40.0%). The onset time of cisatracurium was shorter after ephedrine (167 +/- 64.8 s vs 234.9 +/- 63.1 s). Thus, a low dose of ephedrine given before induction of anaesthesia improves the intubating conditions 2 min after 0.15 mg kg-1 cisatracurium and this effect likely relates to a quicker onset of neuromuscular block.