The uptake and elution of lignocaine and procainamide in the hindquarters of the sheep described using mass balance principles

Richard N. Upton, William B. Runciman, Laurence E. Mather, Colin F. McLean, A. H. Ilsley

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Mass balance principles were used to describe the uptake and elution of lignocaine (lidocaine) and procainamide in the hindquarters of the sheep. Each of four sheep received a right atrial infusion of either lignocaine · HCl (2.7 mg/min) or procainamide · HCl (5.5mg/min) for 180 min. Paired arterial and inferior vena cava (draining the hindquarters) blood samples were taken at 20-min intervals during the infusion and for 180 min after the infusion. Lignocaine and procainamide mean total body clearances were 2.9 L/min (SD 1.1) and 1.3 L/min (SD 0.2), respectively. An index of the uptake and elution of these drugs in the hindquarters was estimated from the net drug mass per unit hindquarter blood flow;indirect evidence suggested that hindquarter blood flow was constant. All the net mass/flow of procainamide that was taken into the hindquarters during the infusion also eluted after the infusion, demonstrating reversible distribution into the tissues. However, uptake of procainamide was still occurring when blood concentrations were constant, indicating that the concentrations of procainamide in the hindquarters were not in equilibrium with the inferior vena cava concentrations. Lignocaine did not reach constant blood concentrations during the infusion and showed no tendency to reach arteriovenous equilibration; an arteriovenous difference of 22%(SD5%) across the hindquarters was measured during the last 60 min of the infusion. By 180 min after the lignocaine infusions, 79% (SD 8%) of the lignocaine net mass/flow had not eluted from the hindquarters when arterial and venous lignocaine concentrations were not significantly different. This drug could remain uneluted due to metabolism and/or avid tissue binding, and presents difficulties in the interpretation of pharmacokinetic data whether based on arterial or venous blood sampling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-40
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Pharmacokinetics and Biopharmaceutics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 1988
Externally publishedYes


  • lignocaine
  • mass balance
  • pharmacokinetics
  • procainamide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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