A physiologically-based model to predict individual pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of remifentanil

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Remifentanil based anesthesia is nowadays spread worldwide. This drug is characterized by a rapid onset of the analgesic effects, but also by a rapid onset of the side effects. For this reason, the knowledge of the remifentanil concentration in the human body is a key topic in anesthesiology. The aims of this work are to propose and validate a physiologically based pharmacokinetic model capable to predict both the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of remifentanil, and to take into account the inter-individual differences among the patients (such as height and body mass). The blood concentration of remifentanil has been successfully simulated and compared with experimental literature data. The pharmacodynamics, in terms of effect of remifentanil on minute ventilation and electroencephalogram, has been implemented in this model. Moreover, the remifentanil concentration in various organs and tissues is predicted, which is a significant improvement with respect to the traditional compartmental models. The availability of the model makes possible the prediction of the effects of remifentanil administration, also accounting for individual parameters.

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