Following are some of the drugs that are commonly checked and the normal target levels:
- Acetaminophen: varies with use;
- Amikacin: 15 to 25 mcg/mL (25.62 to 42.70 micromol/L);
- Aminophylline: 10 to 20 mcg/mL (55.50 to 111.00 micromol/L).
The therapeutic concentration for theophylline, when used as a bronchodilator to treat asthma, is generally considered to be 5–15 mcg/mL (28-83 micromol/L) for adults, 5–10 mcg/mL (28–55 micromol/L) for children and neonates.
Levels greater than 20 mcg/mL (111 micromol/L) are considered toxic. Some people may experience significant side effects at concentrations less than 20 mcg/mL (111 micromol/L).
When theophylline is used to treat apnea in premature neonates, the therapeutic range is 6-11 mcg/mL (33-61 micromol/L). Therapeutic concentration for caffeine for the treatment of premature neonate apnea is much wider, 5-20 mcg/mL (25-103 micromol/L), while concentrations greater than 20 mcg/mL (103 micromol/L) are considered toxic, and greater than 50 mcg/mL (257 micromol/L) are considered critical values.
Low levels of theophylline and caffeine may indicate that the drug has not reached a therapeutic level for the individual tested and there is insufficient drug present to be effective.
Blood levels in the therapeutic range mean that most people will have their symptoms relieved without experiencing significant side effects. Adverse side effects and the risk of seizures increase with higher concentrations of these drugs.