Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Alert issued over intravenous cancer drug

  • Comment
The National Patient Safety Agency has issued urgent guidance for injecting adults and adolescents with vinca alkaloids.

It said it had received reports of four fatal and serious incidents outside the UK in which the chemotherapy had been injected in the spine rather than the vein, resulting in paralysis and death.

The agency said doses should be prepared in intravenous 50ml minibags and doses in syringes should no longer be used.

Professor David Cousins, head of safe medication practice and medical specialities at the NPSA, said: ‘Vinca alkaloids have been administered intravenously in 50ml minibags for several years now outside of the UK and so far there have been no reported incidents of wrong route errors.

‘Clinical staff should therefore refrain from injecting vinca doses in syringes to adult and teenage patients in adult and adolescent chemotherapy units, as this is where the fatalities can occur with wrong route administration,’ he added.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.

Related Jobs