All beta-adrenoreceptor blocking drugs seem to be fairly rapidly and completely absorbed from the gastro-intestinal tract. The rate of absorption, however, appears to be lower in elderly patients and possibly also in patients with renal failure than in younger patients. The extent of bioavailability varies considerably between different beta-blockers. Some of these drugs(e.g. alprenolol and propranolol) have a low extent of bioavailability due to a high first-pass elimination effect, while pindolol and practolol for example are in influenced very little by this effect. However, as some beta-blockers from active metabolites, the bioavailability calculated as the ratio between the area under the plasma concentration time curve of unchanged drug after oral and intravenous administration does not give an accurate estimation of the fraction of the biologically active dose reaching the systemic circulation. The beta-blockers so far studied are rapidly distributed in the body. The t1/2 of distribution ranges between 5 to 30 minutes. The apparent volume of distribution varies 3- to 4-fold between the compounds but in all cases the apparent volume of distribution exceeds the physiological body space. In patients with impaired liver func...Continue Reading
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