Anaemia Management Strategies: Optimising Treatment Using Epoetin Beta (NeoRecormon®)Glaspy J.a · Beguin Y.b
aUniversity of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine, Los Angeles, Calif., USA; bNational Fund for Scientific Research (Belgium) and University of Liège, Department of Hematology, CHU Sart-Tilman, Liège, Belgium
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Anaemia has a detrimental impact on quality of life and it is important that this condition is recognised and treated in patients with cancer. Epoetin beta is an effective and well-tolerated treatment of anaemia in patients with a wide range of solid and haematological malignancies. A study in patients with lymphoid malignancies confirms that epoetin beta is equally effective at the same overall weekly dose (30,000 IU weekly) when given once-weekly or three-times weekly. This once-weekly regimen has also proved effective in patients with solid tumours. Once-weekly treatment is more convenient for the patient, potentially improving compliance and is associated with reduced hospital administration costs. The majority of patients with cancer will respond to epoetin therapy with an increase in haemoglobin levels. However, it is of value to identify those patients who are likely to respond, so that cost-effectiveness can be improved. Despite much research into potential predictive factors, follow-up studies are required and clinical judgement remains key to managing the anaemia of cancer. In addition, studies suggest that intravenous iron supplementation can improve response to epoetin therapy in patients with functional iron deficiency. Epoetin beta offers an effective, safe and convenient therapy for the management of anaemia in patients with cancer. Ongoing studies are expected to lead to a greater understanding of the optimal use of epoetins in cancer-related anaemia.
© 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel
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