Objective: To assess the pharmacokinetics of serum colchicine in patients with familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) with renal impairment.
Methods: Using a specific radioimmunoassay we determined serum colchicine concentration at various time points following oral administration of a single dose of the drug.
Results: Patients with renal insufficiency had a mean +/- SD apparent total colchicine clearance of 0.168 +/- 0.063 l/h/kg, apparent volume of distribution of 4.56 +/- 1.64 l/kg and elimination half-life (t1/2) of 18.8 +/- 1.2 h. Patients with FMF with normal kidney function had a mean clearance of 0.726 +/- 0.110 l/h/kg, volume of distribution of 4.87 +/- 2.05 l/kg and terminal t1/2 of 4.4 +/- 1.0 h.
Conclusion: The kidneys have an important role in the clearance of colchicine. Caution should be exercised in the use of colchicine in patients with renal insufficiency.