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The Neonatology Department in Sancti-Spiritus Maternity Hospital reports a diminished mortality rate (lower than 0, 5) in premature newborns who suffer from the hyaline membrane disease. The success is attributed to the use of Surfacen, one of the greatest Cuban achievements in the Medicine field.

Since it was first introduced in this health institution two years ago, only one child, out of 34 who suffer the disease, died, which proves the effectiveness of this treatment to fight the respiratory distress syndrome which is very frequent in
children lacking the surfactant substance caused by the incomplete formation process of their lungs.

According to Dr. Amary Yumar Diaz, 1st Degree Specialist in Neonatology who heads the clinical study in its 4th phase, this therapy enhances the oxygenation process and the lung function and diminishes the common complications in preterm infants.

Before Surfacen, the mortality rate was almost 100%, thus the need of using higher patterns in the mechanical fan which could lead to more serious complications.

This drug is a natural pulmonary surfactant obtained from healthy pig’s lungs that favored the availability of this product and a greater possibility of using it.

Surfacen, produced by Havana’s Center for Animal and Vegetable Health (CENSA) reduces the tension in the alveolus surface, thus replacing the native surfactant deficiencies and increasing the oxygen level in blood which contributes to eliminate the  hyaline membrane.

Producing this medicine saves Cuba of spending 3 million dollars each year when importing Survante, a foreign medicine used only in the most critical cases and expensively obtained in other countries due to the US embargo on the island.

The surfactant has a similar or a higher quality if compared to other products currently in the market. It is only produced in developed countries at a price that oscillates between 400 and 800 dollars per dose.

Spain and Cuba hold the patent for the new product while it has been introduced in some other countries such as Chile, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela and Colombia. In 1998, Surfacen was awarded the silver medal in the 26th International
Innovation Fair, held in Geneva, Switzerland.

A similar product is only produced in developed countries at a price ranging between 400 and 800 dollars per dose.


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