Comparison of imipenem pharmacokinetics in patients with acute or chronic renal failure treated with continuous hemofiltration

Am J Kidney Dis. 1993 Feb;21(2):172-9. doi: 10.1016/s0272-6386(12)81089-4.


The total clearance of imipenem, a carbapenem antibiotic, is reduced from approximately 230 mL/min in patients with normal renal function to approximately 50 mL/min in patients with chronic renal failure. This decline in clearance results not only from the loss of renal clearance, but also from a reduction in the nonrenal clearance from 130 to 50 mL/min. Current dosing recommendations for the administration of imipenem to patients with acute or chronic renal failure are based on this reduced clearance rate. We investigated the pharmacokinetics of imipenem in critically ill patients with acute or chronic renal failure to determine whether published dosing guidelines were applicable to both patient populations. Imipenem pharmacokinetic parameters were determined in 10 anuric patients with renal failure managed by continuous venovenous hemofiltration (CVVH). Seven patients had acute renal failure, while the other three had preexisting chronic renal failure. Imipenem serum concentration data were incorporated into a first-order, single-compartment pharmacokinetic model. Determinations of the area under the serum concentration-time curve were made by the trapezoidal rule. Dosing regimens were calculated from clearance data to achieve a mid-dose imipenem serum concentration of 12 mg/L. The total clearance of imipenem in patients with acute renal failure (108.3 +/- 13.8 mL/min; mean +/- SD) was significantly greater than the total clearance measured in patients with chronic renal failure (64.4 +/- 10.5 mL/min; P < 0.02). This increased clearance resulted from a greater nonrenal clearance of the drug in patients with acute renal failure (95.0 +/- 13.8 v 51.1 +/- 10.5 mL/min; P < 0.02).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Kidney Injury / metabolism*
  • Acute Kidney Injury / therapy
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Cilastatin / therapeutic use
  • Cilastatin, Imipenem Drug Combination
  • Drug Combinations
  • Female
  • Hemofiltration*
  • Humans
  • Imipenem / administration & dosage
  • Imipenem / pharmacokinetics*
  • Imipenem / therapeutic use
  • Kidney / metabolism*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / metabolism*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Drug Combinations
  • Cilastatin
  • Imipenem
  • Cilastatin, Imipenem Drug Combination