New Study Says Amgen’s Aranesp is Not Only Dangerous But Ineffective

Amgen’s anemia drug Aranesp received a black box warning in 2007 over serious safety concerns linking the medication to an increased risk for heart attacks and strokes. Now, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found that Aranesp is no more effective at treating anemia than an inactive placebo. Ironically, the study was funded by Aranesp’s manufacturer Amgen. Besides being ineffective in treating anemia, the study found that Aranesp actually doubled the stroke risk in patients taking the drug.
“If a clinician is treating a patient for fatigue and other symptoms of anemia and the symptoms do not improve, they should consider stopping the drug because it may expose the patient to increased risk of stroke,” said Dr. Robert Toto, professor of internal medicine at UT Southwestern and senior author of the study, which was published in The New England Journal of Medicine.