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Br J Clin Pharmacol. 1985 Oct;20(4):323-6.

Influence of rifampicin and isoniazid on the kinetics of phenytoin.


Clearance of phenytoin after i.v. injection of 100 mg was studied in six patients before and after 2 weeks daily treatment with 450 mg rifampicin, and in 14 patients with tuberculosis receiving standard treatment with 450 mg rifampicin, 300 mg isoniazid, and 1200 mg ethambutol daily. Acetylator status was measured by urinary acetylated sulphadimidine. Clearance of phenytoin in patients receiving only rifampicin increased from 46.7 ml min-1 +/- 20.6 ml min-1 to 97.8 ml min-1 +/- 33.4 ml min-1 (P less than 0.01), while clearance in patients on three drugs increased from 47.1 +/- 23.4 ml min-1 to 81.3 ml min-1 +/- 41.6 ml min-1 (P less than 0.01). No significant differences were observed between the six fast acetylators and the eight slow acetylators. Phenytoin kinetics were unchanged after further 3 months of combined treatment. Rifampicin is a strong inducer of the elimination of phenytoin. Combined treatment with isoniazid has no counter-acting effect in either fast or slow acetylators.

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