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Free Content The colorimetric analysis of anti-tuberculosis fixed-dose combination tablets and capsules

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SETTING: The perceived need to demonstrate whether or not the actual amounts of rifampicin, isoniazid and pyrazinamide in fixed-dose combination tablets or capsules correspond to their stated drug contents.

OBJECTIVE: To adapt specific, robust and simple colorimetric methods that have been previously applied to measuring plasma and urinary rifampicin, isoniazid, pyrazinamide and ethambutol concentrations to estimate tablet and capsule drug contents.

DESIGN: The methods were applied to the analysis of 14 commercially manufactured fixed-dose combinations: two capsule and three tablet formulations containing rifampicin and isoniazid; seven tablet formulations containing rifampicin, isoniazid and pyrazinamide; and two tablet formulations containing rifampicin, isoniazid, pyrazinamide and ethambutol.

RESULTS: All the combined formulations contained near to their stated drug contents. Replicate analyses confirmed the excellent precision of the drug analyses.

CONCLUSION: Such methods are not only rapid to perform but should be practical in many Third World situations with relatively modest laboratory facilities.

Keywords: colorimetric drug analysis; ethambutol; isoniazid; pyrazinamide; rifampicin

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: Department of Medical Microbiology, St. George's Hospital Medical School, London, UK

Publication date: November 1, 1999

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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