Why don't you need to check Vancomycin levels if it is given orally but you do for IV?

I know that patients given IV Vancomycin need to have Vancomycin levels checked. But there was a patient I saw being treated with oral Vancomycin for C Diff, and they were not doing Vancomycin levels. Surely this is still important?

Authored By Jessica Michaels on Wednesday 10th October 2012

Responses

Liam Watson
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Medical Student
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Posted about 7 years ago

Vancomycin isn't absorbed from the GI tract so oral therapy doesn't lead to vancomycin entering the blood. Therefore the levels of the drug in the blood don't need to be measured.

This makes it ideal for the treatment of C. Diff as

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Margaret Bell
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Other Medical Professional - Tameside General Hospital
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Posted about 7 years ago

Oral Vancomycin is poorly absorbed from the GI tract and therefore blood level monitoring is not normally required as very little enters the systemic circulation. This poor absorption allows high concentrations to be achieved in the GI tract to locally

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