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UNDERLYING ASSUMPTIONS

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The basic assumptions underlying therapeutic drug monitoring (see Table 4–1) are that drug metabolism varies from patient to patient and that the plasma level of a drug is more closely related to the drug’s therapeutic effect or toxicity than is the dosage. For certain drugs that are intended for long-term use (see Table 4–2), close monitoring with appropriate routine hematology and chemistry tests may be necessary to avoid or minimize drug-associated adverse events.

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TABLE 4–1.THERAPEUTIC DRUG MONITORING.1

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