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Indication

Aranesp® (darbepoetin alfa) is indicated for the treatment of anemia... read more

Aranesp® (darbepoetin alfa) is indicated for the treatment of anemia due to chronic kidney disease (CKD), including patients on dialysis and patients not on dialysis. read more

Aranesp® (darbepoetin alfa) is indicated for the treatment of anemia due to chronic kidney disease (CKD), including patients on dialysis and patients not on dialysis.

Limitations of Use

  • Aranesp® has not been shown to improve quality of life, fatigue, or patient well-being.
  • Aranesp® is not indicated for use as a substitute for red blood cell transfusions in patients who require immediate correction of anemia.
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Annual transfusion rate is 4 times higher in patients with Hb < 10 g/dL vs ≥ 10 g/dL1

Adapted from Gilbertson et al. Am J Kidney Dis. 2013. Retrospective cohort study of prevalent Medicare patients on hemodialysis as of January 1, 1999, to January 1, 2010. Patients were categorized based on mean 3-month Hb levels between April and June of each year. The primary outcome was inpatient or outpatient transfusion during the 6-month follow-up period of each cohort year. Transfusions in patients with Hb < 10 g/dL were compared with transfusions in patients with Hb ≥ 10 g/dL.

*N ranged from 118,338 in 1999 to 188,450 in 2010.

Data were adjusted for age, sex, race, end-stage renal disease attribution, dialysis duration, ESA dose, antibiotic use, iron use, hospitalization days, comorbid conditions, previous transfusion, and facility ownership.

Risk for transfusion increased when Hb was < 10 g/dL and remained even after adjusting for clinical factors such as age, race, and comorbidities.1

Monitor Hb frequently and intervene with Aranesp® QW and Q2W dosing to reduce the need for RBC transfusions.2

Dosing Information

  • Physicians and patients should weigh the possible benefits of decreasing transfusions against the increased risks of death and other serious cardiovascular adverse events.
  • Initiate Aranesp® treatment when the Hb level > 1 g/dL.
  • Individualize dosing and use the lowest dose of Aranesp® sufficient to reduce the need for RBC transfusions.

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Important Safety Information.

Abbreviations and References:
ESA = erythropoiesis-stimulating agent; Hb = hemoglobin; QW = once weekly; Q2W = once every two weeks.
References: 1. Gilbertson DT, Monda KL, Bradbury BD, Collins AJ. RBC transfusions among hemodialysis patients (1999-2010): influence of hemoglobin concentrations below 10 g/dL. Am J Kidney Dis. 2013;62:919-928. 2. Aranesp® (darbepoetin alfa) prescribing information, Amgen.