Objectives A pharmacy Central Intravenous Additives Service (CIVAS) provides ready to use injectable medicines. However, manipulation of a licensed injectable medicine may significantly alter the stability of drug(s) in the final product. The aim of this study was to develop a stability indicating assay for CIVAS produced dobutamine 500 mg in 50 ml dextrose 1% (w/v) prefilled syringes, and to allocate a suitable shelf life.
Methods A stability indicating high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) assay was established for dobutamine. The stability of dobutamine prefilled syringes was evaluated under storage conditions of 4°C (protected from light), room temperature (protected from light), room temperature (exposed to light) and 40°C (protected from light) at various time points (up to 42 days).
Results An HPLC method employing a Hypersil column, mobile phase (pH=4.0) consisting of 82:12:6 (v/v/v) 0.05 M KH2PO4:acetonitrile:methanol plus 0.3% (v/v) triethylamine with UV detection at λ=280 nm was specific for dobutamine. Under different storage conditions only samples stored at 40°C showed greater than 5% degradation (5.08%) at 42 days and had the shortest T95% based on this criterion (44.6 days compared with 111.4 days for 4°C). Exposure to light also reduced dobutamine stability. Discolouration on storage was the limiting factor in shelf life allocation, even when dobutamine remained within 5% of the initial concentration.
Conclusions A stability indicating HPLC assay for dobutamine was developed. The shelf life recommended for the CIVAS product was 42 days at 4°C and 35 days at room temperature when protected from light.
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