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Valproic acid free fraction in epileptic children under chronic monotherapy

Valproic acid free fraction in epileptic children under chronic monotherapy

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring 5(2): 197-200

The total and free (nonprotein-bound) concentration of valproic acid (VPA) was determined in plasma samples collected at two different times of the day (before the morning dose and 3 h later) in 62 epileptic children receiving maintenance single-drug therapy with sodium valproate. Both the total and the free concentrations were lower in the early than in the late morning samples (total VPA: 394.4 +/- 150.0 vs. 556.9 +/- 175.2 mumol/L; free VPA: 20.1 +/- 11.1 vs. 31.3 +/- 17.4 mumol/L). The average free fraction of the drug was also lower in the early morning (4.8 +/- 1.3 vs. 5.4 +/- 1.6%, p less than 0.001). At both sampling times, the free fraction was positively correlated (p less than 0.01) with the total concentration. Evidence is presented that, at equal total plasma VPA concentration, the free fraction of the drug is significantly (p = 0.01) higher in the early than in the late morning samples. The rise in plasma free fatty acids (acting as displacing agents) after the overnight fast is probably responsible for this difference in free fraction. The implications of these findings with respect to the monitoring of free plasma VPA levels are discussed.

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Accession: 044936968

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PMID: 6410546

DOI: 10.1097/00007691-198306000-00008

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