Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Synthetic Blood Substitue...coming to a hospital near you

Since the majority of you live on the Wasatch Front, you should be aware of a new clinical trial involving a synthetic blood substitute, because you may become part of the study. (Washington Post Article) A wonderful new product called PolyHeme(R) has shown great promise as a synthetic blood for trauma situations. The FDA has cleared it for clinical trials in trauma patients under an informed-consent waiver. This means that since they are informing the public before the trial begins, you have the option to identify yourself as not wanting to participate by wearing a blue bracelet, or by displaying/hanging this bracelet in your car (e.g. hang from rear-view mirror). Otherwise, if you are in an emergency situation where you need blood, you may end up receiving the PolyHeme(R) whether you want to or not. Also, two public meetings will be held at the following venues:

Tuesday, June 21, 4:30-6 p.m. at the Sandy Library, 10100 S. 1300 East, Sandy.

Wednesday, June 29, 6:30-8 p.m. at the West Valley Family Fitness Center, 5415 W. 3100 South, West Valley City.

If you would like more information, please see the following links: Deseret Morning News Article, or the manufacturer's website. If you want my opinion, I think that PolyHeme(R) looks safe and will end up being an amazing product. It can be given to any person regardless of bloodtype, it carries oxygen, and it can be sterilized to prevent accidental infection. If it proves to be as good as the company claims, it could save a lot of lives.


At 2:52 PM, Blogger Tyler said...

Any blood type? Wow.

In terms of trauma and emergency medicine, this is huge.

What about transport of other nutrients, or transport of wastes? Or, will the be used to reduce the amount of transfused blood required, but not completely eliminate the need for transfusions?

At 4:45 PM, Blogger Nathan said...

As I understand it, this will be used only for emergency situations. It is designed to carry oxygen to keep the patient alive long enough for the trauma teams to do their thing. I don't forsee it eliminating transfusions altogether.


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