Author(s): White NJ, Watt G, Bergqvist Y, Njelesani EK, White NJ, Watt G, Bergqvist Y, Njelesani EK
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Abstract There is no information and therefore no consensus on how chloroquine should be administered to persons with severe malaria. Although widely considered dangerous, parenteral chloroquine is extensively used. We studied the acute disposition and toxicity of intravenous (iv), intramuscular (im), subcutaneous (sc), and oral chloroquine in 60 adult Zambian patients hospitalized with falciparum malaria. Plasma concentration profiles after parenteral administration were characterized by wide fluctuations between peak and trough values. Absorption of im and sc chloroquine was rapid, with a median time to peak concentration of 30 min and a peak plasma concentration five times higher than after oral administration. The pharmacokinetic data suggest that the acute toxicity of parenteral chloroquine is related to transiently high concentrations in blood and result from incomplete distribution out of a relatively small central compartment. Parenteral chloroquine may be administered safely by simply giving smaller, more-frequent doses than are currently used or, in the case of iv administration, by using continuous infusion.
This article was published in J Infect Dis
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Pharmacology