Drug Dosing in Patients Undergoing Therapeutic Plasma Exchange

Abstract

Therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE) is an extracorporeal process in which a large volume of whole blood is taken from the patient’s vein. Plasma is then separated from the other cellular components of the blood and discarded while the remaining blood components may then be returned to the patient. Replacement fluids such as albumin or fresh-frozen plasma may or may not be used. TPE has been used clinically for the removal of pathologic targets in the plasma in a variety of conditions, such as pathogenic antibodies in autoimmune disorders. TPE is becoming more common in the neurointensive care space as autoimmunity has been shown to play an etiological role in many acute neurological disorders. It is important to note that not only does TPE removes pathologic elements from the plasma, but may also remove drugs, which may be an intended or unintended consequence. The objective of the current review is to provide an up-to-date summary of the available evidence pertaining to drug removal via TPE and provide relevant clinical suggestions where applicable. This review also aims to provide an easy-to-follow clinical tool in order to determine the possibility of a drug removal via TPE given the procedure-specific and pharmacokinetic drug properties.

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Acknowledgements

Janice Kung, Librarian at John W. Scott Library, for assisting with the keywords’ selection and search strategy.

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SHM and TH designed the study. MEDLINE and EMBASE search and data extraction were conducted by EC and confirmed by JB and SHM. Additionally, TH and SC conducted MEDLINE and PubMed search and data extraction, independent from the other search. All authors wrote and revised the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Sherif Hanafy Mahmoud.

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Mahmoud, S.H., Buhler, J., Chu, E. et al. Drug Dosing in Patients Undergoing Therapeutic Plasma Exchange. Neurocrit Care (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12028-020-00989-1

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Keywords

  • Plasmapheresis
  • TPE plasma exchange
  • Drug removal
  • Apheresis