Pharmacokinetics of naproxen in elderly patients
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The pharmacokinetics of naproxen have been examined in 13 elderly patients (mean age 84.2 years) and in 9 younger patients (mean age 53.9 years) at the end of a 21 day course of therapy with naproxen 500 mg b.d. The mean pre-dose concentration on days 19, 20 and 21 was significantly higher in the elderly patients than in the controls (60.1 vs. 43.3 µ g · ml−1). The AUC (0–24) was significantly higher in the elderly subjects only when normalized for body weight (9.1 vs. 5.4 µg·ml−1·h kg−1 p⩽0.02). The AUC was significantly higher in the elderly group compared to the control group also in the normalized form. The apparent clearance of naproxen was reduced in the elderly compared to the control patients (315 vs. 628 ml·h−1). The percentage protein binding of naproxen was the same in both groups (99.8%) but the free concentration of naproxen was significantly higher in the elderly patients than in the control patients (141 vs. 89.8 ng·ml−1). Although there was no excess of side effects in the elderly patients it is suggested that when naproxen is given to elderly patients, therapy should be started at the lower end of the dosage range.
Key wordsnaproxen osteoarthritis elderly patients pharmacokinetics
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