Background and importance Patients hospitalised in intensive care units (ICUs) often require many drug infusions. Due to limited intravenous (IV) accesses, concomitant administration of drugs in the same infusion line is usually necessary. Compatibility studies of Y-site administrations are available in the literature, but many data are lacking. Previous work1 identified a list of Y-site administrations without compatibility data.
Aim and objectives Nefopam, a non-opioid analgesic, is usually administered in critical care units. The aim of this study was to evaluate the physical compatibility of nefopam with other drugs used in ICUs, to secure the Y-site administration of IV drugs.
Material and methods Compatibility of nefopam with nine drugs commonly used in ICUs has been tested (calcium chloride, cefotaxime, hydrocortisone, isosorbide, magnesium, nicardipine, pyridoxine, thiamine, tramadol). These drugs were diluted in different solvents (water for injection, 0.9% sodium chloride (NaCl), 5% dextrose (D5W), 10% dextrose, Isofundine) or used pure, leading to 21 pairs being tested. For each pair, three ratios were evaluated (nefopam 80–160 µg/mL/drug B: 9/1; 1/1; 1/9). Physical compatibility examinations were performed on each mixture after preparation, and after 1-hour and 4-hour storage. This evaluation included a visual examination with the search for precipitation formation, colour change, gas formation, and a subvisual evaluation: absorbance measurements by ultraviolet (UV) spectrophotometry at 350, 410 and 550 nm, and the light obscuration particle count test. pH evaluation was performed at each analysis time point.
Results 20/21 pairs tested were compatible (95%), conforming for all items. The mixture nefopam (160 µg/mL – 0.9% NaCl) with cefotaxime (40 mg/mL – D5W) at a ratio of 1/9 revealed a subvisual incompatibility by particle counting at each time studied, while no visual change was observed.
Conclusion and relevance These laboratory tests demonstrated the compatibility of 20 pairs containing nefopam. The pair with a high concentration of cefotaxime showed particle counting, allowing the incompatibility of nefopam (160 µg/mL – 0.9% NaCl) with cefotaxime (40 mg/mL – D5W) to be concluded. New compatibility data are now available to secure IV administration. These results cannot be extrapolated for mixtures of more than two drugs.
References and/or acknowledgements 1. D’Huart, et al. Pharm Technol Hosp Pharm 2019;4(1):29–40.
Conflict of interest No conflict of interest
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