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Anemia drugs raise risks, study says

June 02, 2007|From Reuters

An updated analysis of data from studies of anemia drugs used with cancer treatments showed that they increased risk of death and blood clots, an industry newsletter reported Friday.

The findings showed that use of the drugs, which include Amgen Inc.'s Aranesp and Epogen as well as Johnson & Johnson's Procrit, increased risk of death 11% and risk of blood clot 59% when compared with oncology patients who did not use the drugs, according to the Cancer Letter.

The results, culled from a collection of randomized trials reported since 2003, were an update and reinterpretation of Cochrane Collaboration reports on the drugs and will be presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology's annual meeting Sunday.

Tom Lillie, medical director for Aranesp at Thousand Oaks-based Amgen, said the results were the same as prior findings from Cochrane, which showed that overall survival is neutral.

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