Capillary gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric method for the identification and quantification of some benzodiazepines and their unconjugated metabolites in plasma

Journal of Chromatography
C Drouet-CoassoloJ P Cano


A gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric method for the identification and/or quantification of diazepam, clobazam, flunitrazepam, triazolam, midazolam, oxazepam and lorazepam and some of their desmethylated and hydroxylated metabolites in plasma is described. Benzodiazepines were extracted from plasma with butyl acetate at pH 9; the hydroxylated compounds were then silylated with N,O-bis (trimethylsilyltrifluoroacetamide). Analysis was performed using a compact mass-selective detector operating in the electron-impact mode. Depending on the concentration, identification was performed either by direct comparison of the observed mass spectra with reference spectra or by the relative intensities of the most intense and characteristic ions in the selected-ion monitoring (SIM) mode. Quantification was performed in the SIM mode using the most intense ion. The intra-assay precision and accuracy were better than 5-6%; linearity was satisfactory up to 1-2 micrograms/ml. The detection limit was 1-5 ng/ml for most of the benzodiazepines. This method can be easily used in clinical situations when a safe and rapid response is essential for patient treatment.


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