This study was designed to optimize a method for the identification and quantification of ephedrines in oral fluid (OF) and for its application to subjects taking different doses of pseudoephedrine. Ephedrines use by athletes is banned by World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), only "in competition" if their concentration in urine exceeds the cutoff limit. The study aimed to establish if there is a correlation in terms of times of elimination and of concentration trends of ephedrine in OF and urine after administration of therapeutic doses of pseudoephedrine to various subjects. Results obtained from excretion studies performed on eight subjects showed reproducible times of disappearance of ephedrines from OF. Pseudoephedrine was generally at low concentrations or undetectable in oral fluid samples 12 h after administration, whereas urine samples collected in the same period of time showed higher ephedrine concentrations and exceeding cutoff values generally between 8 and 24 h after administration of the drug. Within- and between-individual variability was observed in terms of concentrations of pseudoephedrine in OF following the administration of the same dose. Only in the case of sustained-release drugs were constant pseudoephedrine concentrations achieved in OF.
- Ephedrines, oral fluid and urine analysis, doping analysis, drug monitoring/drug screening, forensic toxicology