Do therapeutic doses of acarbose alter the pharmacokinetics of digoxin?
Author(s): Cohen E, Almog S, Staruvin D, Garty M
Affiliation(s): Recanati Center for Medicine and Research, Clinical Pharmacology Unit, Rabin Medical Center, Beilinson Campus, Petah Tiqva, Israel.
Publication date & source: 2002-10, Isr Med Assoc J., 4(10):772-5.
Publication type: Clinical Trial; Randomized Controlled Trial
BACKGROUND: Acarbose has become an important adjuvant therapy for diabetic patients. Many of these patients are also treated with digoxin for congestive heart failure or chronic atrial fibrillation. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate a possible drug interaction between acarbose and digoxin. METHODS: An open-label, analyst-blind, randomized, crossover, two-period study was conducted in 11 healthy subjects. In period I, each subject received one single oral dose of 0.75 mg digoxin. In period II, they were given acarbose tablets, 50 mg 3 times a day for 12 days. On day 8, one hour after acarbose administration, a single oral dose of 0.75 mg digoxin was administered. The study periods were separated by a 3 week washout interval. Serum digoxin levels, over time, in the two periods were compared by standard techniques. RESULTS: There were no differences in the pharmacokinetic parameters of digoxin in the two periods, apart from a significant increase in the mean maximum serum concentration (Cmax) when digoxin was given with acarbose (5.97 compared to 4.67 g/L, P = 0.02). Simulated steady-state peak levels of digoxin (Cmax,ss) achieved with a daily dose of 0.25 mg digoxin, in the presence and absence of acarbose, were 2.89 and 2.40 g/L respectively (P = 0.05). Simulated steady-state trough (Cmin,ss) and average (Cave,ss) concentrations were similar and within the therapeutic window. CONCLUSION: There was no significant pharmacokinetic interaction between digoxin and acarbose at current therapeutic doses in the healthy volunteers. This interaction should be further studied with higher doses of acarbose and at steady-state conditions.