Rapid Measurement of Basic Drugs in Blood Applied to Clinical and Forensic Toxicology

Ann Clin Biochem. 1990 Sep;27 ( Pt 5):473-7. doi: 10.1177/000456329002700509.


A gas chromatographic method is presented to measure blood, serum or plasma concentrations of more than 40 basic drugs. The sensitivity is 0.05 mg/L or less, which represents medium-high therapeutic and overdose concentrations, and in many instances the major active metabolites are also quantified. The paper describes a single step extraction from basic solution into n-butyl acetate containing maprotiline internal standard. Disposable glass tubes are used, with direct chromatography of the upper organic layer. GLC analysis is conducted for 10 min isothermally on a packed column (3% SP2250) with nitrogen-phosphorus detection. The coefficient of variation (CV) of the assay is between 2% and 5%, and data on the reproducibility of retention times are presented.

MeSH terms

  • Calibration
  • Chromatography, Gas
  • Forensic Medicine / methods*
  • Humans
  • Poisoning / blood*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Time Factors
  • Toxicology / methods*