Population Pharmacokinetics of Levofloxacin in Plasma and Bone of Patients Undergoing Hip or Knee Surgery

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Patients undergoing hip or knee replacement therapy are routinely pretreated with antibiotics before they enter the operation theater. This treatment intends to reduce the incidence of peri- or postsurgical infections. Here, we calculated the uptake kinetics of levofloxacin into bone to see whether levofloxacin could be obtained from the trabecular and cortical bone and at what time concentrations are sufficiently high to inhibit the usual hospital infections. Patients (n = 42) undergoing routine surgery were treated with 500 mg levofloxacin intravenously immediately prior to the operation. Plasma samples were taken before and at 3 points after termination of drug infusion. After replacement of the bones, extracts were obtained from them. Levofloxacin was quantified using high-performance liquid chromatography. The kinetics of levofloxacin and its distribution into bone were analyzed using a population approach (ADAPT5). Clearance was 14.0 L/h, and distribution volume was 77 L. Bone uptake t½ was calculated as 4.2 and 5.4 hours for cortical bone and trabecular bone, respectively. In knee samples (but not in hip samples), we noted that the cortical bone contained higher levels of levofloxacin than the trabecular bone. From our data, we can conclude that levofloxacin might be useful for prophylactic use in bone surgery.

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