Meridian Medical Technologies, Inc., a Pfizer company, has introduced a new single-vial dose of CYANOKIT® (hydroxocobalamin for injection) 5 g. In this new presentation of CYANOKIT®, the entire starting dose of 5 g hydroxocobalamin is now provided in a single vial, replacing the previous kit containing two, 2.5-g vials. CYANOKIT® is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of either known or suspected cyanide poisoning.[i]
Cyanide (CN) can be released by virtually any material containing carbon and nitrogen when burned under high temperature and low oxygen conditions.[ii],[iii] There is high potential for CN toxicity at many fire scenes due to the increased use of synthetic materials that produce CN during combustion in closed-space fires.2,3 Moderate to high concentrations of cyanide can cause severe injury and death within minutes.[iv] Therefore Cyanide poisoning is a life-threatening situation that requires immediate medical attention.
There’s currently no diagnostic test to confirm CN poisoning in the field within the limited window for initiating potentially lifesaving intervention.2,3 In addition, CN poisoning can be difficult to differentiate with carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning due to common signs and symptoms.2 Because CN poisoning prevents cells from using oxygen (O2), signs and symptoms of CN poisoning also mimic those of O2 deprivation.[v]
Cyanide poisoning may result from inhalation, ingestion, or dermal exposure and should be suspected in smoke inhalation victims if they’re exposed to fire or smoke in an enclosed area, present with soot around the mouth, nose, or back of mouth or have an altered mental status.
CYANOKIT® is administered intravenously after being reconstituted with sodium chloride for injection. Hydroxocobalamin, the main component in CYANOKIT®, strongly binds the cyanide directly, forming a natural form of vitamin B12, cyanocobalamin, which is excreted in the urine.4
In addition to the full starting dose of CYANOKIT® 5 g now contained in a single vial, the new packaging is more compact than the previous packaging and the new dose also features a 20 percent greater shelf life (36 months from the date of formulation).
To learn more about CYANOKIT®, please visit www.CYANOKIT.com.
[i] Cyanokit [package insert]. Columbia, MD: Meridian Medical Technologies, Inc.; 2011.
[ii] Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Cyanide toxicity. Am Fam Physician. 1993;48(1):107-114.
[iii] Alcorta R. Smoke inhalation & acute cyanide poisoning. In: Losavio K, ed. Smoke Inhalation & Hydrogen Cyanide Poisoning. San Diego, CA: JEMS Communications; 2004:6-17.
[iv] Eckstein M, Maniscalco PM. Focus on smoke inhalation— the most common cause of acute cyanide poisoning. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2006;21(2):s49-s55.
[v] Schnepp R. Where there’s fire—there’s smoke! In: Smoke: Cyanide and Carbon Monoxide: The Toxic Twins of Smoke Inhalation. Indianapolis, IN: Cyanide Poisoning Treatment Coalition; 2009:3-8