Intraoperative Anaphylaxis Following Injection of a Bleomycin-Gelatin Solution for Sclerotherapy

Laura Roberts, Leah Braswell, Gregory Maves, Kimberly Stumpf, Margaret Redmond, Joseph D. Tobias


During the perioperative period, the most commonly identified agents that are responsible for acute allergic reactions include antibiotics, neuromuscular blocking agents, opioids, chlorhexidine, and iodinated dyes for radiologic imaging. However, whenever an allergic reaction is suspected, all of the agents to which the patient has been exposed must be considered. Although bleomycin is utilized as the primary agent for sclerotherapy in the treatment of vascular malformations, other substances such as Surgiflo may be added to the bleomycin solution to increase its efficacy and promote thrombosis of the smaller vessels. These products are derived from animal collagen and contain gelatin which may lead to an allergic reaction. We present an 11-year-old girl undergoing sclerotherapy treatment of an extensive left lower extremity venous malformation who subsequently developed perioperative hemodynamic instability requiring intervention after receiving an injection of a bleomycin and Surgiflo solution. Further investigation identified gelatin in the Surgiflo as the causative agent of the allergic event. Previous reports of such reactions are reviewed and the perioperative care and treatment of patients who experience anaphylaxis is addressed.

J Med Cases. 2022;13(4):159-162


Anaphylaxis; Anaphylactoid reactions; Intraoperative care; Bleomycin; Allergic reactions; Sclerotherapy; Gelatin; Case report

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