In this improved reversed-phase liquid-chromatographic procedure for determination of mexiletine in plasma, mexiletine and an internal standard, chlorodisopyramide, are extracted with methylene chloride from 0.5 mL of serum or plasma; the extract is then concentrated and injected onto a C18 chromatographic column. Mexiletine in the column effluent is detected by monitoring absorbance at 210 nm. It is quantified by use of mexiletine-internal standard peak-height ratios. The relation between this ratio and mexiletine concentration is linear from 0.1 to 5.0 mg/L. The lower limit of detection is about 50 μg/L. At a mexiletine concentration of 2.0 mg/L in serum, intrarun precision (CV) is 2.9% and inter-run precision is 5.9%; at 0.5 mg/L, these CVs are 5.7% and 9.6%, respectively. Analytical recovery of added mexiletine in serum is 68-88%. Therapeutic concentrations of some commonly administered drugs in patients' specimens did not interfere. In serum from 38 patients receiving mexiletine for cardiac arrhythymia, concentrations measured by this method correlated with therapeutic efficacy.
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