Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic models are used to predict and explore drug infusion schemes and their resulting concentration profiles for clinical application. Our aim was to develop a pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic model for remifentanil that is accurate in patients with a wide range of age and weight.Methods:
Remifentanil pharmacokinetic data were obtained from three previously published studies of adults and children, one of which also contained pharmacodynamic data from adults. NONMEM was used to estimate allometrically scaled compartmental pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic models. Weight, age, height, sex, and body mass index were explored as covariates. Predictive performance was measured across young children, children, young adults, middle-aged, and elderly.Results:
Overall, 2,634 remifentanil arterial concentration and 3,989 spectral-edge frequency observations from 131 individuals (55 male, 76 female) were analyzed. Age range was 5 days to 85 yr, weight range was 2.5 to 106 kg, and height range was 49 to 193 cm. The final pharmacokinetic model uses age, weight, and sex as covariates. Parameter estimates for a 35-yr-old, 70-kg male (reference individual) are: V1, 5.81 l; V2, 8.82 l; V3, 5.03 l; CL, 2.58 l/min; Q2, 1.72 l/min; and Q3, 0.124 l/min. Parameters mostly increased with fat-free mass and decreased with age. The pharmacodynamic model effect compartment rate constant (ke0) was 1.09 per minute (reference individual), which decreased with age.Conclusions:
We developed a pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic model to predict remifentanil concentration and effect for a wide range of patient ages and weights. Performance exceeded the Minto model over a wide age and weight range.