Digoxin tablets are incompletely absorbed by human subjects. Substantial differences in the bioavailability of currently marketed digoxin products have been demonstrated repeatedly. Differing pharmacokinetic patterns have been observed with various preparations. The variation in absorption is not due to lack of tablet content uniformity. Therapeutic ineffectiveness has been noted with products of inferior bioavailability. Establishment of bioavailability standards, and governmental regulation of the problem, are urgently needed. A digoxin preparation that was 100% absorbed would not necessarily be ideal. Urinary digoxin excretion 24-hr after a single dose may prove to be a useful screening test for bioavailability. The cause of variation in the absorption of digoxin tablets remains to be established, but differences in the rate at which such tablets dissolve may be important.
- 1971, by The Williams & Wilkins Co.