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Ther Drug Monit. 2006 Jun;28(3):351-8.

Population pharmacokinetics and dosing of flucloxacillin in preterm and term neonates.

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Department of Clinical Pharmacy, University Hospital of Maastricht, The Netherlands.


In total 235 flucloxacillin total (free+protein bound) plasma concentrations were determined in 55 neonates (gestational age 26 to 42 weeks, postnatal age 0 to 44 days) with reversed-phase HPLC in surplus plasma samples from routine gentamicin assays. Population pharmacokinetic parameters were calculated according to an one compartment open model with iterative two-stage Bayesian fitting (MWPHARM 3.50, Mediware, The Netherlands). Mean clearance corrected for weight was 0.18+/-0.10 L kgh and volume of distribution corrected for weight was 0.54+/-0.17 L/kg. Pearson correlations between the individual pharmacokinetic parameters and covariates, like gestational age, plasma creatinine, and gentamicin clearance, were low and therefore not relevant for use in clinical practice. Total plasma concentrations above 200 mg/L were considered toxic and T>MIC (time above minimum inhibitory free plasma concentration) of more than 40% was considered effective. Protein binding was assumed to be 86.3% in all neonates, based on literature. The current dosage regimen, 25 or 50 mg/kg every 8 or 12 hours, did not result in effective plasma concentrations for the treatment of Staphylococcus aureus in 17 (31%) of the 55 neonates. Therefore, the authors suggest an initial dose of 25 mg/kg/4 h for all neonates, irrespective of their age, based on the breakpoint MIC value of flucloxacillin for Staphylococcus aureus (2.0 mg/L). After isolation of the causative agent of infection, flucloxacillin administration ought to be reconsidered based on the expected susceptibility pattern of the isolate. When oxacillin sensitive coagulase negative staphylococci are isolated, the initial dose should be reduced to 10 mg/kg/6 h, based on the breakpoint MIC value of 0.25 mg/L. Simulation with these new dosage regimens indicated that satisfactory plasma concentrations were reached in 52 of the 55 neonates. However, the regimens need prospective verification. Moreover, the exact role of neonatal protein binding needs to be further investigated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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