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Office of Research Integrity

Expired Medical Materials

Expired Medical Materials Policy | Use/Disposal Guidelines | Best Practices

Policy on Use of Expired Medical Materials

Expired medical materials such as sutures, catheters and gloves must be appropriately labeled and stored in a physically separate location from non-expired medical materials. These materials may only be used for nonsurvival surgical procedures where their use will not have an adverse effect on the animal’s well being or the scientific validity of the study.

No expired drugs or fluids are permitted for use in live animals. All substances to be administered to live animals must be within their expiration dates. (10/13)

Use/Disposal Guidelines

Drugs or fluids past their expiration dates may not be used in live animals for any purpose and must be immediately discarded. Any non-controlled expired drugs found in animal care and use areas will be discarded by IACUC or DLAR representatives on sight. Expired controlled substances must be disposed of through the Controlled Substance Auditor. Presence or use of expired drugs or fluids may be reportable to the IACUC.

Expired surgical materials like sutures, tubing and drapes may be suitable for resterilization, or may be kept in a separate location, clearly labeled for terminal use only.

Best Practices

  1. Maintain a regularly scheduled inventory check, with special attention to expiration dates.
  2. For labs which are only occasionally used for animal work, check inventory as soon as a procedure is scheduled to ensure adequate time for materials replacement if necessary.
  3. If expired materials will be kept for terminal procedures, create a clearly labeled space in a location separated from non-expired materials.
  4. Regularly review criteria for use/disposal of expired materials with all lab members.
  5. Check with DLAR staff if there are any questions regarding the use of expired materials.