Aminoglycosides exert a post-antibiotic effect: high peak levels are required to penetrate the bacterial cell wall, where the drug continues to have a bactericidal effect after systemic levels have declined. Monitoring is used to ensure adequacy of dosing, to delay or prevent the onset of nephrotoxicity and reduce the risk of vestibular and auditory ototoxicity.
Initial gentamicin dosing is based on bodyweight to ensure an adequate peak concentration.
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A joint initiative of the Patient Services Section and the Drug and Therapeutics Information Service of the Pharmacy Department, Repatriation General Hospital, Daw Park, South Australia. The RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletin is distributed in electronic format on a weekly basis, and aims to present concise, factual information on issues of current interest in therapeutics, drug safety and cost-effective use of medications.
Editor: Assoc. Prof. Chris Alderman, University of South Australia – Director of Pharmacy, RGH © Pharmacy Department, Repatriation General Hospital, Daw Park, South Australia 5041.