Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Chemistry and Pharmacology
Summary The bioavailability and diuretic effect of furosemide 40 mg administered orally for at least 6 months have been compared in patients with chronic respiratory failure and in healthy controls. The mean urinary recovery of unchanged drug was 11.5 mg and 9.41 mg in 24 h after pre- and postprandial administration to 10 patients, whereas the recovery was 14.4 mg in 10 healthy subjects. The diuretic effect, in terms of urine flow and sodium ion excretion in the 6 h after administration, was also less in patients than in healthy subjects. This was ascribed to the lower bioavailability of furosemide in patients, based on the urinary recovery of unchanged drug, and not to a lower level of response to furosemide than in healthy subjects. The mean absolute bioavailability of furosemide in 6 patients was 41.3% and 63.4%, respectively, calculated from unchanged drug and total drug (unchanged plus glucuronide conjugate). Approximately 53.9% of the dose of furosemide was excreted as the glucuronide conjugate after oral administration, and 34.2% after i.v. injection in the 6 patients. In 3 of the 6 patients studied, a distinct first-pass effect for glucuronidation of furosemide was observed after oral administration. In another study, the mean glucuronide fraction recovered in 24-h urine was 20.7% and 7.3% (p〈0.01) in 38 patients and 12 healthy subjects, respectively. The fraction in urine was not affected by changing the dose of furosemide from 20 to 120 mg. The lower bioavailability in patients as compared to healthy subjects is ascribed to enhanced glucuronidation and incomplete drug absorption.
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