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Redistribution of Drugs

  • In simple words, redistribution means the drug initially goes to certain organs and then from there, it goes to some other organs.

  • This is seen with highly lipid-soluble drugs because lipid-soluble drugs cross the biological membranes easily.

We administer a drug

it first gets distributed to organs with high blood supply. e.g. brain, kidney, heart

being lipid soluble, it diffuses back rapidly

gets redistributed to less vascular but more bulky organs e.g. adipose tissue, muscles


If the site of action of the drug is an organ with a high blood supply e.g. thiopentone used for general anesthesia.

first distribution produces rapid action

But soon the redistribution leads to the termination of the action.


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