Some of the views expressed in the following notes on newly approved products should be regarded as preliminary, as there may have been limited published data at the time of publication, and little experience in Australia of their safety or efficacy. However, the Editorial Executive Committee believes that comments made in good faith at an early stage may still be of value. Before new drugs are prescribed, the Committee believes it is important that more detailed information is obtained from the manufacturer's approved product information, a drug information centre or some other appropriate source.

Gelofusine (B. Braun)
4% solution in 500 mL and 1000 mL containers
Approved indication: plasma volume substitute

This product has been available overseas for many years. A similar product (polygeline 3.5%) is already available in Australia.

An infusion of succinylated gelatin retains fluid in the intravascular space. The effect lasts for 3-4 hours. This can be useful in the treatment of hypovolaemia e.g. due to bleeding. The infusion can also be used when haemodilution or extra-corporeal circulation is needed.

Colloidal plasma volume substitutes can cause anaphylaxis in susceptible patients. A fall in blood pressure may cause clinical confusion if the patient was being treated for hypotension.