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Sci Pharm. 2013 Jul 14;81(4):1003-15. doi: 10.3797/scipharm.1305-20. Print 2013 Oct-Dec.

Stability-Indicating UPLC Method for Tramadol HCl Impurities in the Tramadol Injection after Dilution by Infusion Fluids (5% Dextrose and 0.9% Sodium Chloride).

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Pharmaceutical Technology Center, Cadila Healthcare Ltd, Moraiya, Ahmedabad-382210, Gujarat, India.
Center for Chemical Sciences and Technology, IST, J.N.T. University, Kukatpally, Hyderabad-500072, A. P., India.
J. N. T. University affiliated research guide, Kukatpally, Hyderabad-500072, A. P., India.


A novel, rapid, and sensitive ultra-performance liquid chromatography (UPLC) method has been developed and validated as per ICH guidelines for the determination of tramadol HCl impurities in the tramadol HCl injection after reconstitution by infusion fluids (5% dextrose and 0.9% sodium chloride). The tramadol HCl injection is for the treatment of patients with moderate-to-severe pain. The stability of the reconstituted solution is critical before intravenous injection. The literature search resulted in few published articles on assays of tramadol in infusion fluids by conventional HPLC. No attempts have yet been made to determine the impurities in infusion fluids, as the concentration of tramadol after reconstitution is extremely low (0.4 mg/mL) and that of impurities is even lower. The proposed method is novel as it allows the quantitation of the impurities of tramadol HCl and is based on modern chromatographic techniques like UPLC. The method was developed using the Waters Acquity BEH C18 column with a mobile phase consisting of a gradient mixture of solvent A (trifluroacetic acid buffer) and solvent B (methanol: acetonitrile). The model stability study was designed by diluting the tramadol HCl injection in the 5% dextrose injection and 0.9% sodium chloride injection. Each mixture was kept under storage at room temperature (25 ± 2°C) for testing at initial, 2, 4, 8, 12, 18 & 24 hours. The validation study illustrates that the proposed method is suitable for the determination of tramadol and its impurities. The proposed method makes use of the LC-MS-compatible mobile phase. It can be useful for the determination of tramadol HCl and its impurities in plasma samples and other pharmaceutical dosage forms.


0.9% Sodium Chloride injection; 5% Dextrose injection; Stability study; Stability-indicating UPLC method; Tramadol HCl impurities; Validation

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