May 1, 1987

Plasma hydroxychloroquine concentrations and efficacy in rheumatoid arthritis

Arthritis and Rheumatism
D R MillerV Stecher


Plasma levels of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and its metabolites were measured, by high performance liquid chromatography, in 37 rheumatoid arthritis patients who could be clearly distinguished as responders (n = 28) or nonresponders (n = 9) to HCQ, 400 mg/day. Efficacy in both groups was determined by the patients' erythrocyte sedimentation rates, joint counts, morning stiffness, global assessments, concurrent drug therapies, and grip strength. The response rate was 76%. Responders had a mean HCQ level of 213 ng/ml, versus 306 in nonresponders (P less than 0.05). The mean level of HCQ plus total metabolites in responders was 363 ng/ml, versus 554 in nonresponders (P less than 0.01). We conclude that monitoring plasma HCQ levels is unlikely to be helpful in individualizing effective drug dosage.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Monitoring, Physiologic
Rheumatoid Arthritis

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