[03 March 2014]
Products Affected - Description
Vinblastine lyophilized powder for injection, Bedford
10 mg vial (NDC 55390-0091-10)
Reason for the Shortage
- Ben Venue has stopped production in its plant in Bedford, Ohio and will close in early 2014. Ben Venue supplies multiple sterile injectable products for Bedford Laboratories. Supplies of product that has already been manufactured will continue to be released until inventory is depleted. Bedford Laboratories has a small number of products manufactured elsewhere that are not affected by this closure.1
- Fresenius Kabi (formerly APP) had their product in short supply due to increased demand for the product and a manufacturing delay.2
Vinblastine sulfate injection, Fresenius Kabi (formerly APP)2
1 mg/mL, 10 mL vial (NDC 63323-0278-10)
Estimated Resupply Dates
Bedford has vinblastine lyophilized powder for injection on long-term back order and the company cannot estimate a release date. Ben Venue manufactured vinblastine for Bedford.1
Implications for Patient Care
Vinblastine is labeled to treat a number of disease states including Hodgkin disease, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, mycosis fungoides, advanced testicular carcinoma, Kaposi sarcoma, choriocarcinoma, and breast cancer.3 Vinblastine is also used to treat non-small cell lung carcinoma, bladder cancer, and refractory idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura.3
- Chemotherapy agents, such as vinblastine, pose additional safety risks both for patients and for healthcare workers handling these agents.3,4
- Use additional caution when processing orders for chemotherapy drugs, especially when switching between chemotherapy agents or when processing orders for chemotherapy agents with which staff may be unfamiliar (eg, those not normally prescribed at a specific institution).3,4
Alternative Agents & Management
- The choice of an alternative agent must be patient-specific and based on renal function, liver function, and the neoplasm type and location. No single agent can be substituted for vinblastine.3-5
- Consider evaluating the health-care system’s total supply of vinblastine before beginning patients on combination chemotherapy regimens containing vinblastine. If adequate supplies are not available, select an alternative regimen.
- Consult a Hematology/Oncology specialist for patient- and neoplasm-specific recommendations.
- Refer to the ASHP Guidelines on Managing Drug Product Shortages for more guidance on developing a multidisciplinary plan when the supply must be allocated.
- Bedford Laboratories, customer service (personal communications). January 11, February 16, March 20, May 3, July 11, August 30, and December 4, 2012; February 25, April 19, May 29, June 18 and 28, August 7 and 14, October 21, and December 2, 2013; February 26, 2014.
- Fresenius Kabi, customer service (personal communications). January 11 and 12, February 8 and 22, March 20, May 7, July 9, September 5, and December 4, 2012; February 28, April 16, May 29, June 18, July 2 and 11, August 9 and 30, October 22, and December 6, 2013; February 28, 2014.
- Vinblastine. In.Beckwith, M. C. and L. S. Tyler, Eds. (2011). Cancer Chemotherapy Manual (eFacts). St. Louis, MO, Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.
- Antineoplastic agents. In: McEvoy GK, ed. AHFS 2010 Drug Information. Bethesda, MD: American Society of Health-Systems Pharmacists; 2010: 902-1260.
- Drug Facts and Comparisons Online. St. Louis, MO: Wolters Kluwer Health Inc. September 2010.
Updated March 3, 2014 by Michelle Wheeler, PharmD, Drug Information Specialist. Created January 11, 2012 by Jane Chandramouli, PharmD, Drug Information Specialist. Copyright 2014, University of Utah, Drug Information Service
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