Possible Efficacy of Agarose Powder Compared with Activated Charcoal in Treatment of Acute Valproic Acid Overdose in Rats.

Document Type : Original Article


1 Lecturer of forensic Medicine and Clinical Toxicology- Faculty of Medicine- Assiut University, Egypt.

2 Assistant Professor of forensic medicine and clinical toxicology ,faculty of medicine, Assuit university, Egypt.

3 Lecturer of Lecturer of Forensic Medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, Assiut University, Egypt.

4 Assistant professor of Forensic Medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, Al-Azhar University, Assiut, Egypt.


Acute toxicity is a critical medical emergency that needs urgent and effective treatment. Debates about the effectiveness of activated charcoal have been raised last years, and toxicologists have started searching for alternative adsorbents. This experimental study assesses the efficacy of agar as an adsorbent to drugs with enterohepatic reabsorption, like valproic acid, in comparison with activated charcoal. Method: Randomized controlled trial was designed using thirty-two non-pregnant female adult albino rats, which were divided into four groups at random. Groups I, II, III, and IV represented the negative control, positive control, overdose, and treated groups, respectively. Group III received valproic acid (200mg/kg) only, while group IV was subdivided into three groups that received the same dose of valproic plus activated charcoal (1g/kg), agar (1 g/kg), and both activated charcoal and agar in groups IVa, IVb, and IVc, respectively. Results: The mean serum valproic acid levels in the treated groups (IVa, IVb, and IVc) were statistically significantly decreased in comparison with the overdose group. In comparing the three treated groups, group (IVb) showed the least mean of valproic acid, but the difference with group (IVa) was statistically insignificant. Liver enzymes were lower in groups treated with agar only or agar and activated charcoal than in the group treated with activated charcoal only. Conclusions: Agar reduces the serum level of valproic acid, which may be due to its possible adsorptive effect and interference with enterohepatic circulation. Further studies are needed on a broad spectrum of drugs whether they have enterohepatic circulation or not.


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