QT time prolongation
Adverse drug events
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Explanations of the substances for patients
We have no additional warnings for the combination of lithium and astemizole. Please also consult the relevant specialist information.
The reported changes in exposure correspond to the changes in the plasma concentration-time curve [ AUC ]. We do not expect any change in exposure for lithium, when combined with astemizole (100%). We do not expect any change in exposure for astemizole, when combined with lithium (100%).
The pharmacokinetic parameters of the average population are used as the starting point for calculating the individual changes in exposure due to the interactions.
The bioavailability of lithium is unknown. The therapeutic window is narrow and the safety margin is therefore small. Even small changes in exposure can increase the risk of toxicity. Protein binding [ Pb ] is not known. The metabolism does not take place via the common cytochromes.
Astemizole has a low oral bioavailability [ F ] of 3%, which is why the maximum plasma level [Cmax] tends to change strongly with an interaction. The terminal half-life [ t12 ] is 22 hours and constant plasma levels [ Css ] are reached after approximately 88 hours. The protein binding [ Pb ] is 97% strong. The metabolism takes place via CYP2D6 and CYP3A4, among others.
|Serotonergic Effects a||2||++||Ø|
Recommendation: As a precautionary measure, symptoms of serotonergic overstimulation should be taken into account, especially after increasing the dose and at doses in the upper therapeutic range.
Rating: Lithium modulates the serotonergic system to a moderate extent. The risk of a serotonergic syndrome can be classified as low with this medication if the dosage is in the usual range. According to our knowledge, astemizole does not increase serotonergic activity.
|Kiesel & Durán b||1||+||Ø|
Recommendation: As a precaution, attention should be paid to anticholinergic symptoms, especially after increasing the dose and at doses in the upper therapeutic range.
Rating: Lithium only has a mild effect on the anticholinergic system. The risk of anticholinergic syndrome with this medication is rather low if the dosage is in the usual range. According to our knowledge, astemizole does not increase anticholinergic activity.
QT time prolongation
Rating: In combination, lithium and astemizole can potentially trigger ventricular arrhythmias of the torsades de pointes type.
General adverse effects
|Side effects||∑ frequency||lit||ast|
|Blurred vision||9.0 %||9.0||n.a.|
|Weight gain||1.0 %||+||n.a.|
Nephrotic syndrome: lithium
Tubulointerstitial nephritis: lithium
Erythema multiforme: lithium
Neuroleptic malignant syndrome: lithium
Pseudotumor cerebri: lithium
Based on your answers and scientific information, we assess the individual risk of undesirable side effects. These recommendations are intended to advise professionals and are not a substitute for consultation with a doctor. In the restricted test version (alpha), the risk of all substances has not yet been conclusively assessed.
Abstract: This histological and immunohistochemical study of 6 food handlers affected by immediate contact dermatitis due to foods shows that apparently normal skin of patients with this condition presents several histological and immunohistochemical abnormalities. Skin biopsies of normal hand skin showed focal parakeratosis and moderately dense dermal infiltrates. Immunohistochemistry showed an increased number of Langerhans cells in the epidermis and in the superficial dermis and a mononuclear dermal infiltrate consisting of peripheral T lymphocytes with a CD4/CD8 ratio of 5-6/1. Biopsies of the immediate vesicular reactions induced by foods showed spongiotic vesicles within the epidermis and a moderate to dense mononuclear dermal perivascular infiltrate. The immunohistochemical features were similar to those described in apparently normal skin. The mechanism of this immediate vesicular reaction requires further research. The rapid appearance of the lesions (after 20-30 min) probably excludes an immunological cell-mediated pathogenesis. A non-immunological mechanism due to direct liberation of mediators by foods is more readily conceivable than an immediate immunological type of contact reaction.
Abstract: Astemizole is a long-acting, highly selective histamine1-receptor antagonist with minimal central and anticholinergic effects. Comparison studies have shown astemizole to be equal or superior to currently available antihistamines, beclomethasone nasal spray, and cromolyn sodium in relieving allergic symptoms of seasonal and perennial allergic rhinitis. Other uses include treatment of allergic conjunctivitis and chronic urticaria. Astemizole is not as effective for treatment of acute allergic symptoms because of its delayed onset of action. Astemizole and its active metabolite, desmethylastemizole, have long elimination half-lives permitting once-daily dosing. The incidence of sedation is lower than with conventional antihistamines, but increased appetite and weight gain do occur. Astemizole should be useful for both maintenance and prophylactic therapy in patients with chronic allergic conditions who cannot tolerate the sedative or anticholinergic effects of conventional antihistamines.
Abstract: Astemizole is an H1-histamine receptor antagonist with a long duration of action permitting once daily administration. Its efficacy in seasonal and perennial allergic rhinitis has been convincingly demonstrated, and several comparative studies suggest that astemizole is at least as effective as some other H1-histamine receptor antagonists. A few smaller studies have shown beneficial effects on the symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis and chronic urticaria (but not atopic dermatitis). While astemizole appears to share with other H1-histamine receptor antagonists a tendency to increase appetite and cause weight gain after prolonged use, it offers the important advantage of an absence of significant central nervous system depression or anticholinergic effects with usual doses. Thus, astemizole offers a worthwhile improvement in side effect profile over 'traditional' H1-histamine receptor antagonists, especially in patients bothered by the sedative effects of these drugs.
Abstract: An overdose of astemizole predisposes the myocardium to ventricular dysrhythmias, including torsades de pointes. Herein we describe a case of astemizole-induced torsades de pointes ventricular tachycardia and also review previous case reports in the literature. All the patients were young, and dysrhythmias developed only in those with corrected QT intervals greater than 500 ms. Although several mechanisms have been postulated, no clear explanation has been provided for why astemizole promotes myocardial dysrhythmias. Treatment of astemizole-induced torsades de pointes includes discontinuing use of astemizole, intravenous administration of magnesium sulfate and isoproterenol, temporary cardiac pacing, and, when necessary, direct current cardioversion. A cardiac cause of syncope or convulsions must not be overlooked, especially in patients taking H1 antagonists because they often have these symptoms before hospitalization or detection of torsades de pointes (or both).
Abstract: No Abstract available
Abstract: A 26 year-old woman was admitted to the hospital two hours after astemizole overdose. Electrocardiograph showed a prolonged QT interval. Torsade de pointes occurred 13 h after ingestion. Plasma levels of astemizole plus hydroxylated metabolites showed an apparent plasma half-life of 17 h. The possible occurrence of torsade de pointes in astemizole overdose, and the long elimination time of astemizole and hydroxylated metabolites, makes it necessary to maintain ECG monitoring until QT interval has returned to normal.
Abstract: AIMS: The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of chronic itraconazole treatment on the pharmacokinetics and cardiovascular effects of single dose astemizole in healthy subjects was studied. METHODS: Twelve male volunteers were taking orally 200 mg twice daily itraconazole or placebo for 14 days with a washout period of 4 weeks in between. Approximately 2 h after the morning dose of itraconazole or placebo on day 11, 10 mg astemizole was orally administered. The plasma concentrations of astemizole and desmethylastemizole were measured by radioimmunoassay up to 504 h after administration; electrocardiograms with analysis of the QTc interval were recorded up to 24 h post administration. RESULTS: Itraconazole treatment did not significantly change the peak concentration of astemizole (0.74 vs 0.81 ng ml-1) but it increased the area under the curve from 0 to 24 h (5.46 to 9.95 ng ml-1 h) and from 0 to infinity (17.4 to 48.2 ng ml-1 h), and the elimination half-life (2.1 to 3.6 days). The systemic bioavailability of desmethylastemizole was also increased. The QTc interval did not increase after astemizole administration and there was no difference in the QTc intervals between the itraconazole and placebo session. CONCLUSIONS: Chronic administration of itraconazole influences the metabolism of single dose astemizole in normal volunteers without changes of cardiac repolarization during the first 24 h after astemizole administration. However, the reduction in astemizole clearance under concomitant administration of itraconazole may result in a marked increase in astemizole plasma concentrations and QTc alterations during chronic combined intake of astemizole with itraconazole.
Abstract: Second-generation histamine H1 receptor antagonists (antihistamines) have been developed to reduce or eliminate the sedation and anticholinergic adverse effects that occur with older H1 receptor antagonists. This article evaluates second-generation antihistamines, including acrivastine, astemizole, azelastine, cetirizine, ebastine, fexofenadine, ketotifen, loratadine, mizolastine and terfenadine, for significant features that affect choice. In addition to their primary mechanism of antagonising histamine at the H1 receptor, these agents may act on other mediators of the allergic reaction. However, the clinical significance of activity beyond that mediated by histamine H1 receptor antagonism has yet to be demonstrated. Most of the agents reviewed are metabolised by the liver to active metabolites that play a significant role in their effect. Conditions that result in accumulation of astemizole, ebastine and terfenadine may prolong the QT interval and result in torsade de pointes. The remaining agents reviewed do not appear to have this risk. For allergic rhinitis, all agents are effective and the choice should be based on other factors. For urticaria, cetirizine and mizolastine demonstrate superior suppression of wheal and flare at the dosages recommended by the manufacturer. For atopic dermatitis, as adjunctive therapy to reduce pruritus, cetirizine, ketotifen and loratadine demonstrate efficacy. Although current evidence does not suggest a primary role for these agents in the management of asthma, it does support their use for asthmatic patients when there is coexisting allergic rhinitis, dermatitis or urticaria.
Abstract: AIMS: The aims of the present study were to investigate the metabolism of astemizole in human liver microsomes, to assess possible pharmacokinetic drug-interactions with astemizole and to compare its metabolism with terfenadine, a typical H1 receptor antagonist known to be metabolized predominantly by CYP3A4. METHODS: Astemizole or terfenadine were incubated with human liver microsomes or recombinant cytochromes P450 in the absence or presence of chemical inhibitors and antibodies. RESULTS: Troleandomycin, a CYP3A4 inhibitor, markedly reduced the oxidation of terfenadine (26% of controls) in human liver microsomes, but showed only a marginal inhibition on the oxidation of astemizole (81% of controls). Three metabolites of astemizole were detected in a liver microsomal system, i.e. desmethylastemizole (DES-AST), 6-hydroxyastemizole (6OH-AST) and norastemizole (NOR-AST) at the ratio of 7.4 : 2.8 : 1. Experiments with recombinant P450s and antibodies indicate a negligible role for CYP3A4 on the main metabolic route of astemizole, i.e. formation of DES-AST, although CYP3A4 may mediate the relatively minor metabolic routes to 6OH-AST and NOR-AST. Recombinant CYP2D6 catalysed the formation of 6OH-AST and DES-AST. Studies with human liver microsomes, however, suggest a major role for a mono P450 in DES-AST formation. CONCLUSIONS: In contrast to terfenadine, a minor role for CYP3A4 and involvement of multiple P450 isozymes are suggested in the metabolism of astemizole. These differences in P450 isozymes involved in the metabolism of astemizole and terfenadine may associate with distinct pharmacokinetic influences observed with coadministration of drugs metabolized by CYP3A4.
Abstract: QT prolongation induced by antipsychotics has been reported to be a determinant for the development of torsade de pointes and sudden death. However, the effect of lithium on QT interval has not been fully clarified. The aim of the present study was to elucidate the relationship between serum lithium concentration and QT interval in patients treated with lithium. We examined serum lithium concentrations and electrocardiographic features in 39 inpatients with bipolar affective disorder or schizophrenia. The longest QT interval in the 12 electrocardiographic leads was measured using GE Marquette QT guard System Software, and Bazett formula was used for heart rate correction. The longest QTc was positively correlated with lithium concentration ( r = 0.46, P = .003). Multiple regression analysis revealed that sex (female, P = .037), lower serum K + concentration ( P = .029), and especially, higher serum lithium concentration ( P = .009) were determinants for the prolongation of the QTc.
Abstract: The objective of this study was to measure the anticholinergic activity (AA) of medications commonly used by older adults. A radioreceptor assay was used to investigate the AA of 107 medications. Six clinically relevant concentrations were assessed for each medication. Rodent forebrain and striatum homogenate was used with tritiated quinuclidinyl benzilate. Drug-free serum was added to medication and atropine standard-curve samples. For medications that showed detectable AA, average steady-state peak plasma and serum concentrations (C(max)) in older adults were used to estimate relationships between in vitro dose and AA. All results are reported in pmol/mL of atropine equivalents. At typical doses administered to older adults, amitriptyline, atropine, clozapine, dicyclomine, doxepin, L-hyoscyamine, thioridazine, and tolterodine demonstrated AA exceeding 15 pmol/mL. Chlorpromazine, diphenhydramine, nortriptyline, olanzapine, oxybutynin, and paroxetine had AA values of 5 to 15 pmol/mL. Citalopram, escitalopram, fluoxetine, lithium, mirtazapine, quetiapine, ranitidine, and temazepam had values less than 5 pmol/mL. Amoxicillin, celecoxib, cephalexin, diazepam, digoxin, diphenoxylate, donepezil, duloxetine, fentanyl, furosemide, hydrocodone, lansoprazole, levofloxacin, metformin, phenytoin, propoxyphene, and topiramate demonstrated AA only at the highest concentrations tested (patients with above-average C(max) values, who receive higher doses, or are frail may show AA). The remainder of the medications investigated did not demonstrate any AA at the concentrations examined. Psychotropic medications were particularly likely to demonstrate AA. Each of the drug classifications investigated (e.g., antipsychotic, cardiovascular) had at least one medication that demonstrated AA at therapeutic doses. Clinicians can use this information when choosing between equally efficacious medications, as well as in assessing overall anticholinergic burden.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Anticholinergic drugs put elderly patients at a higher risk for falls, cognitive decline, and delirium as well as peripheral adverse reactions like dry mouth or constipation. Prescribers are often unaware of the drug-based anticholinergic burden (ACB) of their patients. This study aimed to develop an anticholinergic burden score for drugs licensed in Germany to be used by clinicians at prescribing level. METHODS: A systematic literature search in pubmed assessed previously published ACB tools. Quantitative grading scores were extracted, reduced to drugs available in Germany, and reevaluated by expert discussion. Drugs were scored as having no, weak, moderate, or strong anticholinergic effects. Further drugs were identified in clinical routine and included as well. RESULTS: The literature search identified 692 different drugs, with 548 drugs available in Germany. After exclusion of drugs due to no systemic effect or scoring of drug combinations (n = 67) and evaluation of 26 additional identified drugs in clinical routine, 504 drugs were scored. Of those, 356 drugs were categorised as having no, 104 drugs were scored as weak, 18 as moderate and 29 as having strong anticholinergic effects. CONCLUSIONS: The newly created ACB score for drugs authorized in Germany can be used in daily clinical practice to reduce potentially inappropriate medications for elderly patients. Further clinical studies investigating its effect on reducing anticholinergic side effects are necessary for validation.