Ampicillin products, 20 capsules, 2 tablets and 23 dry suspensions were evaluated for quality by liquid chromatography at theDrug Analysis Unit University of Nairobi. Four capsule formulations failed limits on content. The Ampicillin content in 5 suspensions dropped below 80% on storage, but had no correlation to decrease in chemical content
Ampicillin is semi-synthetic penicillin used in the management of infections caused by sensitive microorganisms. Microbial resistance against ampicillin is well documented and cross-resistance is a common problem among the penicillins. Development of resistance is always associated with exposure of microorganisms to sub-lethal levels of drugs. The quality administered and especially low content of ampicillin in dosage form could therefore contribute to the development of resistance.
Work on the quality of drugs in the period 1982 to 1992 has shown presence of poor quality penicillin products in the market [1-4]. This observation was recently reinforced by the findings on quality of phenoxymethylpenicillin syrups . The extensive use of ampicillin in kenya as one of the drugs on the essential drugs list of Ministry of Health  led to observed increase in resistance. It was recently replaced by amoxicillin.
The communication presents findings on the quality of ampicillian capsules and tablets and dry syrups found on the Kenyan market using liquid chromatography (LC). The preparations were from private and public sources including those submitted to the ministry of Health drug regulatory authority. The latter are intended for marketing in Kenya after registration, and for the purpose of this paper are treated as being on the market.