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Potassium bromide

Product details:

- Product Name: Potassium bromide

- Formulas : KBr

- Chemical composition : China-technical-25kg

- Product Type: Electroplating chemical

Product description :

Potassium bromide (KBr) is a salt, widely used as an anticonvulsant and a sedative in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with over-the-counter use extending to 1975 in the United States. Its action is due to the bromide ion (sodium bromide is equally effective). Potassium bromide is presently used as a veterinary drug, as an antiepileptic medication for dogs and cats.

Under standard conditions, potassium bromide is a white crystalline powder. It is freely soluble in water. In a dilute aqueous solution, potassium bromide tastes sweet, at higher concentration it tastes bitter, and when most concentrated it tastes salty to humans (these effects are due mainly to potassium ion; sodium bromide merely tastes salty at all concentrations). In high concentration potassium bromide strongly irritates the gastric mucous membrane, leading to nausea and sometimes vomiting (again this effect is typical of all soluble potassium salts).


[edit]Medical and veterinary

The anticonvulsant properties of potassium bromide were first noted by Sir Charles Locock at a meeting of the Royal Medical and Chirurgical Society in 1857. Bromide can be regarded as the first effective medication for epilepsy. At the time, it was commonly thought that epilepsy was caused by masturbation.[1] Locock noted that bromide calmed sexual excitement and thought this was responsible for his success in treating seizures. In the latter half of the 19th century, potassium bromide was used for the calming of seizure and nervous disorders on an enormous scale, with the use by single hospitals being as much as several tons a year (the dose for a given person being a few grams per day).[1]

There would not be a better drug for epilepsy until phenobarbital in 1912. It was often said the British Army laced soldiers++++ tea with bromide to quell sexual arousal, but as doing so would also diminish alertness in battle it is likely to be an urban legend and similar stories were also told about a number of substances.[2]

Bromide compounds, especially sodium bromide, continued to be used in over-the-counter sedatives and headache remedies (such as the original formulation of Bromo-Seltzer) in the United States until 1975 when bromides were withdrawn as ingredients in all over-the-counter medicinal formulations, due to the chronic toxicity of bromide.[3] Bromide++++s exceedingly long half life in the body made it difficult to dose without side effects (see below). Medical use of bromides in the United States was discontinued at this time, as well, as many better and shorter-acting sedatives were known by that time.

Potassium bromide is presently in the veterinary medicine field to treat epilepsy in dogs, either as first-line treatment or in addition to phenobarbital, when seizures are not adequately controlled with phenobarbital alone. Use of bromide in cats is limited because it carries a substantial risk of causing lung inflammation (pneumonitis) in this species. The use of bromide as a treatment drug for animals means that veterinary medical diagnostic laboratories are able as a matter of routine to measure serum levels of bromide on order of a veterinarian, whereas human medical diagnostic labs in the United States do not measure bromide as a routine test.

Potassium bromide is not approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in humans to control seizures. In Germany, it continues to be approved for use as an antiepileptic drug for humans, particularly children and adolescents. These indications include severe forms of generalized tonic-clonic seizures, early-childhood-related Grand-Mal-seizures, and also severe myoclonic seizures during childhood. Adults who have reacted positively to the drug during childhood/adolescence may continue treatment. Potassium bromide tablets are sold under the brand name Dibro-Be mono (Rx-only). The drug has almost complete bioavailability, but the bromide ion has a relatively long half life of 12 days in the blood,[1] making bromide salts difficult to adjust and dose. Bromide is not known to interfere with the absorption or excretion of any other anticonvulsant, though it does have strong interactions with chloride in the body, the normal body uptake and excretion of which strongly influences bromide++++s excretion.[1]

The therapeutic index (ratio of effectiveness to toxicity) is very small for bromide. As with other antiepileptics, sometimes even therapeutic doses (3 to 5 grams per day, taking 6 to 8 weeks to reach stable levels) may give rise to intoxication. Often indistinguishable from ++++expected++++ side-effects, these include:

  • Bromism These are central nervous system reactions. They may include:
lethargysomnolence (from daytime sleepiness to coma)
loss of appetite and cachexia, nausea/emesis with exicosis (loss of body fluid)
loss of reflexes or pathologic reflexes
clonic seizures
loss of neural sensitivity
cerebral edema with associated headache and papilledema of the eyes
delirium: confusion, abnormal speech, loss of concentration and memory, aggressiveness
  • Acne-form dermatitis and other forms of skin disease may also be seen, as well as mucous hypersecretion in the lungs. Asthma and rhinitis may worsen. Rarely, tongue disorder, aphten, bad breath, and obstipation occur.


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