Thought leaders from the medical community in Europe and the U.S. examined the pros and cons of using albumin in treating liver disease and sepsis, and in cardiac surgery, during CSL Behring’s Key Issues Dialogue – "Albumin in Clinical Fluid Management."
The participants engaged in a frank and provocative exchange about the uses and effectiveness of albumin, which is manufactured from human plasma. Albumin is used to stabilize blood pressure in shock or sepsis patients who may be albumin-deficient. It is also used to treat burn patients and augment fluid replacement therapy in cardiac surgery and in certain liver disorders. The participants discussed other patient benefits of albumin, which is a natural human protein.
Mortality rate reduction
"Albumin reduced the odds of post-paracentesis circulatory dysfunction by 61 percent (in one study)," said Mauro Bernardi, M.D., University of Bologna. "Moreover, for the first time, we were also able to show that albumin reduced mortality rate by 36 percent. We do not have a crystalloid plasma expander that reduces mortality as albumin does." Dr. Bernardi said the reduction in mortality rate in this complication of liver disease is based on a meta-analysis performed by his group at the University.
"There is a real need to educate healthcare providers about albumin because its use has changed over time," said Gary R. Haynes, M.D., Ph.D., Saint Louis University School of Medicine, when he addressed some of the current perceptions of albumin. "Even some of the literature for volume resuscitation isn’t up-to-date because we have better ways of assessing intravascular volume."
Cost of albumin
The cost of albumin versus crystalloids was also considered. Luciano Gattinoni, M.D., University of Milan, framed the cost issue in this way: "Good medicine means good economy, not vice versa. When physicians are pressed to save money, the potential for complications and adverse events increases."
This Dialogue is the most recent in CSL Behring’s ongoing series that analyzes critical issues around human plasma-derived and recombinant coagulation factor therapies for patients, caregivers and healthcare providers.
Garrett E. Bergman, M.D., CSL Behring’s Senior Director, Medical Affairs North America, said the Dialogue provided important insights."Because of our varied disciplines, we’ve achieved a cross-pollination of ideas in this Dialogue that is truly unique," Dr. Bergman said. "As Dr. Bernardi noted, the fact that we can discuss our respective problems and find so many common points of interest is unusual. It’s not often that a pathologist and an intensivist have the opportunity to sit down and exchange ideas and experiences."
About CSL Behring
CSL Behring, a leader in the plasma protein therapeutics industry, has provided the international community with albumin for over 50 years. Committed to saving lives and improving the quality of life for people with rare and serious diseases, the company manufactures and markets a range of plasma-derived and recombinant therapies worldwide.
CSL Behring therapies are used around the world to treat coagulation disorders including hemophilia and von Willebrand disease, primary immune deficiencies, hereditary angioedema and inherited respiratory disease. The company’s products are also used in cardiac surgery, organ transplantation and burn treatment, and to prevent hemolytic disease of the newborn.
CSL Behring operates one of the world’s largest plasma collection networks, CSL Plasma. CSL Behring is a subsidiary of CSL Limited (ASX: CSL), a biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Melbourne, Australia. For more information, visit www.cslbehring.com or view CSL Limited’s Corporate Responsibility Report.
Manager Corporate Communications