Aranesp, Epogen, and Procrit – anemia drugs used to boost the number of red blood cells in patients with cancer and kidney disease – have been linked to an increased risk of death. Clinical trial analysis shows that patients treated with these anemia drugs are 10 percent more likely to die than patients taking placebo medication.
To identify the increased risk of fatality, over 50 clinical trials were used to pull data from over 13,600 patients. Along with the heightened risk of death, data also shows that Aranesp, Epogen, and Procrit are 57 percent more likely to cause blood clots in patients.
Aranesp, Epogen, and Procrit are given to cancer patients on chemotherapy and patients with kidney disease in the hopes of avoiding risky blood transfusions. Currently, the Food and Drug Administration has not announced any additional regulatory action on these anemia drugs.