Diclofenac in municipal wastewater treatment plant: quantification using laser diode thermal desorption--atmospheric pressure chemical ionization--tandem mass spectrometry approach in comparison with an established liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry method
Lonappan, L.; Pulicharla, R.; Rouissi, T.; Brar, S.K.; Verma, M.; Surampalli, R.Y.; Valero, Jé.R.
Journal of Chromatography. a 1433: 106-113
Diclofenac (DCF), a prevalent non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) is often detected in wastewater and surface water. Analysis of the pharmaceuticals in complex matrices is often laden with challenges. In this study a reliable, rapid and sensitive method based on laser diode thermal desorption/atmospheric pressure chemical ionization (LDTD/APCI) coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) has been developed for the quantification of DCF in wastewater and wastewater sludge. An established conventional LC-ESI-MS/MS (liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry) method was compared with LDTD-APCI-MS/MS approach. The newly developed LDTD-APCI-MS/MS method reduced the analysis time to 12s in lieu of 12 min for LC-ESI-MS/MS method. The method detection limits for LDTD-APCI-MS/MS method were found to be 270 ng L(-1) (LOD) and 1000 ng L(-1) (LOQ). Furthermore, two extraction procedures, ultrasonic assisted extraction (USE) and accelerated solvent extraction (ASE) for the extraction of DCF from wastewater sludge were compared and ASE with 95.6 ± 7% recovery was effective over USE with 86 ± 4% recovery. The fate and partitioning of DCF in wastewater (WW) and wastewater sludge (WWS) in wastewater treatment plant was also monitored at various stages of treatment in Quebec Urban community wastewater treatment plant. DCF exhibited affinity towards WW than WWS with a presence about 60% of DCF in WW in contrary with theoretical prediction (LogKow=4.51).