FDA Approves Risk Management Plan for ESAs

Cancer patients will learn more from their doctors about the possible risks and benefits of erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) to manage anemia during chemotherapy under a new program just approved by the FDA. ESAs can be given to chemotherapy patients to reduce the need for blood transfusions.  However, there can be problems with ESAs including causing some…  Read More

ESAs Increase Blood Clot Risk

Drugs to treat anemia in older cancer patients increased their risk of blood clots and didn’t reduce the need for blood transfusions. Among over 56,000 cancer patients 65 and older treated in community settings from 1991 through 2002, 27 percent received an erythropoiesis-stimulating agent (ESA).   Fifteen percent of those who got ESAs developed a blood clot…  Read More

FDA Releases Questions and Answers about ESA Medication Guides

The Food and Drug Administration now provides answers to questions about using erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) and their FDA-approved Medication Guides.  The Medication Guides are now part of labeling for ESAs Aranesp® (darbepoetin alfa), Epogen® (epoetin alfa), and Procrit® (epoetin alfa). The Guides are designed to help patients make informed decisions about the risks and benefits of…  Read More

Amgen Changes Pricing Policy for Aranesp

As of October 1, 2008 Amgen will no longer offer rebates to oncologists and oncology clinics who purchase Aranesp® (darbepoetin alfa) although they will provide larger discounts at the time of purchase. They also will no longer base discounts for Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) and Neupogen© (filgrastim) on purchases of Aranesp, a process known as bundling.  Neulasta and…  Read More