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DIGITALIS ELIMINATION

HARRY GOLD, M.D.
Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1923;32(5):779-795. doi:10.1001/archinte.1923.00110230135013.
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The fate of the digitalis bodies in the animal organism is one of the most interesting, though perplexing, problems in the study of this group of drugs. The more basic questions of digitalis action that inevitably arise in a consideration of such phenomena as tolerance, cumulation, difference in persistence, actions and effects, are imperfectly understood. A large literature has accumulated; still our knowledge is fragmentary, the evidence often contradictory, having been obtained under a variety of experimental conditions in different animals with different digitalis bodies.

Efforts to recover the digitalis bodies from hearts poisoned by them have been quite consistently negative.1 While they cannot be recovered from living heart muscle brought to a standstill, they can be recovered from incubations of the drug with emulsions of the heart muscle.2 The recovery of the largest part of the drug from the supernatant fluid of these incubations would contradict the observation that

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