Anemia Drugs: Patients Worried About News

- by

Gresham, ORMany patients are concerned about recent news regarding anemia drugs including Aranesp, Epogen and Procrit. In addition to finding out that the drugs may increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes, patients have learned that the drugs may increase the rate of progression of tumors in certain cancers. Unfortunately, this leaves the families of many patients wondering if their loved ones died more quickly than they would have if they had not been given anemia medications.

Belinda G. is one such person. Her mother was a chemotherapy patient who was also given anemia drugs. Although Belinda acknowledges that her mother was dying of small cell cancer, Belinda can't help but wonder if the use of anemia drugs resulted in her mother passing away sooner than she would have otherwise.

"My mom had been sick since 2000 with lung cancer and it was small cell carcinoma at that time. She beat it and went into remission in 2001. She had never had Procrit or Epogen prior to her remission. Her cancer came back and the cancer spread to her adrenal glands and her organs. They did radiation every day for 10 days and chemo at the same time. The Procrit was given to her in injections that started around February or March 2002.

Anemia Drug Needle"She was a fighter—at the beginning she even continued working and running apartments. Once she started getting shots more frequently, her cancer got progressively worse. She died rather suddenly on January 15, 2003. She was on the shots until she passed away.

"They [medical staff] were telling her that she needed to have the shot because her cell count was low. One time, she asked for it as though she believed it was something she needed to help the situation. I asked why she was taking it, when she did better without it. Back then, there was not a lot known about that.

"Every time my mom had chemotherapy, they gave her the anemia shots. She had been doing well until they started the shots. Did they accelerate the process? I don't know. Small cell is inoperable and there was nothing we can do about it. But I think the anemia drugs might have progressed the situation."

Belinda is not the only one left wondering if anemia drugs either caused a loved one's death or accelerated the rate at which a loved one has died. In November, the FDA strengthened the safety warning on Aranesp, Epogen and Procrit to alert patients to the risk of death, heart attack and the progression of certain cancers. Additionally, a new study has been released linking anemia drugs to an increased risk of leukemia in patients with myelofibrosis.

Doctors have also been warned to use the lowest possible doses of the anemia drugs required to avoid a blood transfusion. Patients who receive higher doses of Aranesp, Epogen or Procrit are at an increased risk of accelerated tumor development. However, these warnings and alerts do nothing to help patients who have already died, or whose cancer has progressed at an increased rate, because they were given anemia medications.

Aranesp, Epogen, and Procrit Legal Help

If you or a loved one has suffered negative side effects from Aransep, Epogen, Procrit, or other anemia drugs, please contact a lawyer involved in a possible [Aranesp, Epogen, and Procrit Lawsuit] to review your case at no cost or obligation.

Add Your Comment on This Story

Please read our comment guidelines before posting.

Note: Your name will be published with your comment.

Your email will only be used if a response is needed.

Request Legal Help