Remdesivir (chemical formula: C27H35N6O8P), is a light yellow to yellow solid. It does not mix well with water. Remdesivir is an experimental drug that works to fight against a broad range of RNA viruses.
Originally developed to treat hepatitis C, remdesivir has also been studied as a treatment for the Ebola virus and more recently, COVID-19. While many tests showed measurable improvements in recovery times from the COVID-19 virus, it was ultimately considered to be not statistically significant. In November 2020, the World Health Organisation provided updated guidance with a conditional recommendation against the use of remdesivir for treating COVID-19.
The routes of exposure for remdesivir include inhalation, ingestion and skin and eye contact.
Inhalation of remdesivir is not thought to produce respiratory irritation, however people with already compromised respiratory function (conditions such as emphysema or chronic bronchitis), may suffer further disability upon inhalation. Those with prior circulatory, nervous system or kidney damage should also take extra precautions when handling the chemical.
Ingestion of remdesivir can be damaging to the health. Symptoms can include; actic acidosis, elevated levels of lactic acid, fatigue, rapid heart beat, abdominal pain, weight loss, nerve damage, shortness of breath and a severely enlarged liver that can lead to death, among others.
Remdesivir is not thought to be a skin irritant, however harmful effects can result following entry into the bloodstream, so it is important that the skin is inspected for open cuts or wounds prior to handling the chemical.
Direct eye exposure to the chemical may cause transient discomfort characterised by tearing and redness. Slight abrasive damage may also result.
If inhaled, remove the patient from the contaminated area to the nearest fresh air source. Other measures are usually unnecessary.
If swallowed, do not induce. If vomiting occurs, ensure the patient is leaned forward or placed on their left side to prevent aspiration. Observe the patient carefully and give them water to rinse out their mouth. Seek medical attention.
In the event of skin exposure, remove all contaminated clothing, footwear and accessories and flush the affected area with plenty of soap and running water. Seek medical attention in the event of irritation.
If exposed to the eyes, flush the eyes out immediately with fresh running water, remembering to wash under the eyelids. Removal of contact lenses should only be done by a skilled individual. Seek medical attention without delay.
Emergency eye wash fountains and safety showers should be accessible in the immediate area of the potential exposure to the chemical and there should always be adequate ventilation to remove or dilute any air contaminants (install local exhaust if necessary).
The PPE recommended when handling remdesivir includes, chemical goggles, full face shields, PVC/rubber gloves, protective shoe covers, head coverings and vinyl suits in cases of emergency.
Chemicals should always be handled with care to avoid harmful health effects due to improper handling. Always refer to the SDS to ensure you are fully aware of the hazards before you begin handling the chemical. Click here for a trial of our SDS Management Software or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about our chemicals management solutions.
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