February 24, 2011
On February 24, 2011, FDA approved changes to the Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir) Oral Solution product label related to toxicity in preterm neonates secondary to adverse events related lopinavir and/or the inactive ingredients propylene glycol and ethanol.
This label change was made after review of 10 postmarketing cases with life-threatening events reported in neonates (babies less than 4 weeks old) that received Kaletra oral solution. Postmarketing life-threatening cases included cardiac toxicity (including complete AV block, bradycardia, and cardiomyopathy), lactic acidosis, acute renal failure, central nervous system depression, and respiratory complications. Of the 10 cases, there was one death due to cardiogenic shock related to a large overdose of Kaletra oral solution.
Reduced metabolism by the liver and reduced kidney function in newborns can lead to an accumulation of lopinavir (the active ingredient), as well as alcohol and propylene glycol. Preterm babies may be at increased risk for health problems because they cannot metabolize propylene glycol; this could lead to accumulation and adverse events such as serious heart, kidney, or breathing problems.
The Dosage and Administration section 2.2 and the Overdosage section 10 were revised to reflect the information. In addition a new Warning and Precautions was included to describe the toxicity in preterm neonates. Below is a summary of the major changes to these sections.
DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION
2.2 Pediatric Patients
KALETRA oral solution should not be administered to neonates before a postmenstrual age (first day of the mothe's last menstrual period to birth plus the time elapsed after birth) of 42 weeks and a postnatal age of at least 14 days has been attained [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)].
KALETRA oral solution contains 42.4% (v/v) alcohol and 15.3% (w/v) propylene glycol. Special attention should be given to accurate calculation of the dose of KALETRA, transcription of the medication order, dispensing information and dosing instructions to minimize the risk for medication errors, and overdose. This is especially important for infants and young children. Total amounts of alcohol and propylene glycol from all medicines that are to be given to pediatric patients 14 days to 6 months of age should be taken into account in order to avoid toxicity from these excipients [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2) and Overdosage (10)].
Prescribers should calculate the appropriate dose of KALETRA for each individual child based on body weight (kg) or body surface area (BSA) to avoid underdosing or exceeding the recommended adult dose.
WARNING AND PRECAUTIONS
5.2 Toxicity in Preterm Neonates
Kaletra oral solution contains the excipients alcohol (42.4% v/v) and propylene glycol (15.3% w/v). When administered concomitantly with propylene glycol, ethanol competitively inhibits the metabolism of propylene glycol, which may lead to elevated concentrations. Preterm neonates may be at increased risk of propylene glycol-associated adverse events due to diminished ability to metabolize propylene glycol, thereby leading to accumulation and potential adverse events. Postmarketing life-threatening cases of cardiac toxicity (including complete AV block, bradycardia, and cardiomyopathy), lactic acidosis, acute renal failure, CNS depression and respiratory complications leading to death have been reported, predominantly in preterm neonates receiving Kaletra oral solution.
Kaletra oral solution should not be used in preterm neonates in the immediate postnatal period because of possible toxicities. A safe and effective dose of Kaletra oral solution in this patient population has not been established. However, if the benefit of using KALETRA oral solution to treat HIV infection in infants immediately after birth outweighs the potential risks, infants should be monitored closely for increases in serum osmolality and serum creatinine, and for toxicity related to KALETRA oral solution including: hyperosmolality, with or without lactic acidosis, renal toxicity, CNS depression (including stupor, coma, and apnea), seizures, hypotonia, cardiac arrhythmias and ECG changes, and hemolysis. Total amounts of alcohol and propylene glycol from all medicines that are to be given to infants should be taken into account in order to avoid toxicity from these excipients [see Dosage and Administration (2.2) and Overdosage (10)].
Overdoses with KALETRA oral solution have been reported. One of these reports described fatal cardiogenic shock in a 2.1 kg infant who received a single dose of 6.5 mL of KALETRA oral solution (520 mg lopinavir, approximately 10-fold above the recommended lopinavir dose) nine days prior. The following events have been reported in association with unintended overdoses in preterm neonates: complete AV block, cardiomyopathy, lactic acidosis, and acute renal failure [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)]. Healthcare professionals should be aware that KALETRA oral solution is highly concentrated and therefore, should pay special attention to accurate calculation of the dose of KALETRA, transcription of the medication order, dispensing information and dosing instructions to minimize the risk for medication errors and overdose. This is especially important for infants and young children.
KALETRA oral solution contains 42.4% alcohol (v/v) and 15.3% propylene glycol (w/v). Ingestion of the product over the recommended dose by an infant or a young child could result in significant toxicity and could potentially be lethal.
Human experience of acute overdosage with KALETRA is limited. Treatment of overdose with KALETRA should consist of general supportive measures including monitoring of vital signs and observation of the clinical status of the patient. There is no specific antidote for overdose with KALETRA. If indicated, elimination of unabsorbed drug should be achieved by gastric lavage. Administration of activated charcoal may also be used to aid in removal of unabsorbed drug. Since lopinavir is highly protein bound, dialysis is unlikely to be beneficial in significant removal of the drug. However, dialysis can remove both alcohol and propylene glycol in the case of overdose with Kaletra oral solution.
The complete revised product label will be available soon at Drugs@FDA.