Glutethimide (Doriden)* has had an unusually rapid and widespread introduction into clinical medicine as a hypnotic and sedative. Chemically, glutethimide is α-ethyl-α-phenylglutarimide whose structual formula is depicted in Figure 1. It is a white crystalline compound with a melting point of 83-85 C and a molecular weight of 217.3. It is
—Chemical structures of glutethimide (Doriden, α-ethyl-α-phenylglutarimide) phenobarbital, and bemegride (Megimide, β-methyl-β-ethylglutarimide). very poorly soluble in water but highly soluble in alcohol and acetone. In large doses, the gastric absorption may be irregular and produce variations in the LD50 obtained after oral administration in animals (0.6 gm. per kilogram in the rat and rabbit, 0.5 gm. per kilogram in the dog, and 0.15 gm. per kilogram in the mouse). The problem of absorption also makes it difficult to establish dose-toxicity relationships in human glutethimide poisoning. Once absorbed, glutethimide is eventually excreted in the bile, and up to
SCHREINER GE, BERMAN LB, KOVACH R, BLOOMER HA. Acute Glutethimide (Doriden) Poisoning: The Use of Bemegride (Megimide) and Hemodialysis. AMA Arch Intern Med. 1958;101(5):899–911. doi:10.1001/archinte.1958.00260170055008
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