Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Blood volume expander may do more harm than good: Winnipeg research team

  • Print

A Winnipeg-based research team has concluded that a product used worldwide to resuscitate critically ill patients with low blood pressure may be doing more harm than good.

The team, whose findings will be published Wednesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association, discovered that use of a commonly used blood volume expander can lead to increased kidney failure and mortality.

Dr. Ryan Zarychanski, a CancerCare Manitoba blood disorder specialist and the study’s lead researcher, said publication of the research could change the way hospitals and regulators around the world view the product.

"I’m really excited to get this out because by using the product less more people will actually live," he said in an interview.

Zarychanski and his team, which included researchers at the University of Manitoba and Laval University in Quebec City, examined 38 clinical trials in support of corn-based hydroxyethyl starches (HES). The trials involved 10,880 patients from around the world.

Zarychanski said problems with HES might have been detected earlier if not for previously published studies conducted by a German investigator that were later retracted due to scientific misconduct.

"When you remove the data from that one investigator [seven studies' worth], the evidence of harm is even more clear," he said.

Zarychanski said there are several alternatives to HES — some of them vastly less expensive than the product that is sold under the trade names of Hespan, Voluven and Volulyte b. HES has been in use since the 1980s.

"I’m expecting that physicians will immediately reconsider the use of the product on a day-to-day basis. I’m expecting that hospitals will re-examine their decision to carry this... or to carry it without restrictions," he said.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Chief justices breakdown cameras in courtroom project

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A female Mallard duck leads a group of duckings on a morning swim through the reflections in the Assiniboine River at The Forks Monday.     (WAYNE GLOWACKI/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS) Winnipeg Free Press  June 18 2012
  • An American White Pelican takes flight from the banks of the Red River in Lockport, MB. A group of pelicans is referred to as a ‘pod’ and the American White Pelican is the only pelican species to have a horn on its bill. May 16, 2012. SARAH O. SWENSON / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Do you think Manitoba needs stronger regulations for temporary workers?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google