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Postgrad Med. 2016;128(2):262-7. doi: 10.1080/00325481.2016.1144448. Epub 2016 Feb 7.

Characterization of the Percutaneous Absorption of Ketoprofen Using the Franz Skin Finite Dose Model.

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a Research and Development, Professional Compounding Centers of America (PCCA) , Houston , TC , USA.



Ketoprofen is an analgesic, anti-inflammatory agent commonly used in the management of chronic musculoskeletal pain. The aim of this study is to characterize the percutaneous absorption of 2 ketoprofen formulations (ketoprofen 10% in Pluronic Lecithin Organogel (PLO) and ketoprofen 10% in Lipoderm, referred to as phospholipid base), when applied to the human cadaver trunk skin, in vitro, using the Franz skin finite dose model. PLO and phospholipid base are vehicles used to facilitate the delivery of drugs into and through the skin following topical applications.


The percutaneous absorption of ketoprofen was evaluated using human cadaver trunk skin from 3 donors. The skin was cut into small sections and cultured within Franz diffusion cells. A variable finite dose of each formulation was then applied to 3 replicate skin sections per donor and receptor solutions were collected at predetermined time points (0, 4, 8, 12, 24, 32, and 48 hr). After the last receptor sample was collected, skin surfaces were washed and split into epidermis and dermis. Collected samples were analyzed using HPLC.


Both PLO and phospholipid base were capable of facilitating the absorption of ketoprofen across human cadaver trunk skin. However, ketoprofen, when in phospholipid base, showed higher mean total absorption (p = 0.022) and faster rate of absorption (p < 0.05 at 2, 6, 10, and 18 hr) than when in PLO.


Chronic musculoskeletal pain can be a major burden for most patients, affecting their lifestyle and reducing overall quality of life. When compared to PLO, phospholipid base has the ability to potentially deliver higher concentrations of ketoprofen to underlying soft tissues and at a more rapid rate. With more ketoprofen at the site of injury, the analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects will likely be enhanced, potentially reducing pain and improving quality of life.


Ketoprofen; musculoskeletal pain; pharmaceutical compounding; phospholipid base; transdermal base; transdermal delivery

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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