Australia's pain relief green whistle is moving from the beach to the streets of Europe

Production of Penthrox. Image: CSIRO

The green whistle, an emergency pain relief device developed in Australia and used by surf clubs, ambulances, defence forces and sporting leagues for 30 years, is to be sold in the UK and Europe.

The Melbourne-made emergency pain killer Penthrox, commonly known as the green whistle, has received regulatory approval for sale in European and UK markets.

Medical Developments International (MDI) will use a new low-cost manufacturing process developed with the CSIRO to increase production of Penthrox’s underlying drug methoxyflurane by ten-fold in order to meet new demand.

Penthrox has significant advantages over other analgesics such as nitrous oxide and morphine in that it is rapid, self-administered, non-addictive, non-narcotic, safe to use and provides strong pain relief.

The green whistle. Image: CSIRO

CSIRO and MDI developed the initial production process together.

“It’s through long-term research collaborations that we can help forward-thinking businesses like MDI jump on new opportunities and remain globally competitive,” CSIRO’s biomedical research program director Dr Paul Savage said.

Penthrox is sold in 11 countries around the world with regulatory applications pending approval in another 13 countries.

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