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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 80

of 'Extravasation injury from chemotherapy and other non-antineoplastic vesicants'

Treatment of tissue extravasation by antitumor agents.
Larson DL
Cancer. 1982;49(9):1796.
Infiltration of antitumor agents into subcutaneous tissues may either result in a local area of self-resolving inflammation, or progress to full-thickness loss of skin and underlying vital structures. The immediate treatment of 50 extravasations occurring over a 20-month period resulted in our developing a protocol of appropriate care. Once extravasation is suspected, the intravenous line is removed, ice is applied intermittently for three days, and the wound is observed closely. No drugs are even given locally. If local pain persists or skin changes progress, the area of involvement is debrided and, a skin graft is applied two to three days later. As a result of this conservative approach, only 12 of 50 patients have required surgery. This method of treatment has minimized patient mortality, hospitalizations, and loss of synchronization of chemotherapy.