Pharmacy World and Science

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 149–160

Clinical pharmacokinetics of antimicrobial drugs in cystic fibrosis.

  • D.J. Touw

DOI: 10.1023/A:1008634911114

Cite this article as:
Touw, D. Pharm World Sci (1998) 20: 149. doi:10.1023/A:1008634911114


The disposition of many drugs in cystic fibrosis is abnormal compared with healthy individuals. In general, changes include an increased volume of distribution expressed in liters per kg bodyweight for highly hydrophilic drugs such as aminoglycosides, and, to a lesser extent, for penicillins and cephalosporins, together with an increased total body clearance. The main reason for the increased volume of distribution is the increased amount of lean tissue per kg bodyweight, since patients with CF are generally undernourished and have a paucity of adipose tissue. The reason for the increased renal clearance is less clear. Increased glomerular filtration and tubular secretion have been observed. Protein binding generally is unaltered in CF. The fluorquinolones and vancomycin show no altered pharmacokinetics in CF although gastro-intestinal absorption may be delayed for fluorquinolones. Sulphamethoxazole shows increased clearance due to an increased acetylation and, in the case of trimethoprim, renal clearance is increased compared with healthy individuals. As a consequence, drugs that show increased clearance, will lead to reduced serum concentrations and smaller AUCs and therefore CF patients require larger doses per kg bodyweight.

AntibioticsCystic FibrosisPharmacokinetics

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • D.J. Touw
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PharmacyUniversity Hospital Vrije UniversiteitAmsterdamThe Netherlands