A comparison of three solvent-free techniques coupled with gas chromatography for determining trihalomethanes in urine samples
The analysis of volatile organic compounds in samples of biological fluids characterized by complex matrices is highly challenging.
This paper presents a comparison of the results obtained in this field using three solvent-free techniques: thin-layer headspace
with autogenous generation of liquid sorbent (TLHS) and membrane separation of the trace substances (pervaporation, PV), both
of which are coupled to direct aqueous injection gas chromatography–electron capture detection (TLHS–DAI–GC–ECD and PV–DAI–GC–ECD),
as well as conventional static headspace analysis followed by GC analysis with ECD detection (HS–GC–ECD). Basic validation
parameters of the HS–GC–ECD, TLHS–DAI–GC–ECD and PV–DAI–GC–ECD procedures were calculated for water and urine samples. The
calibration curves for all procedures were linear within the concentration range examined. The intermediate precisions of
the procedures were good and reached about 10% (for all analytes) for HS–GC–ECD and TLHS–DAI–GC–ECD. The poorest results were
obtained for PV–DAI–GC–ECD: about 20% for all analytes. The lowest method detection limits were obtained for the TLHS–DAI–GC–ECD
procedure: below 0.0022 μg/L for all analytes. The enrichment factors did not differ significantly between water and urine
samples, indicating little or no matrix effect in all procedures.