Sep
2004

Can erythropoietin therapy improve survival?

Glaspy J, Dunst J
Oncology 2004;67 Suppl 1:5-11.
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Anemia is a significant problem for cancer patients, especially those receiving chemotherapy. Preventing or treating anemia in these patients has clear cut quality of life improvements for the patients AND their care givers. Glaspy et al. furthermore tackle the important issue of survival and venous thromboembolism in their review article. They convincingly make the case that, used within safe label indication, erythropoietic agents have not shown a negative impact on survival, rather they probably improve survival in direct and indirect ways. While further research is needed to continue to develop how best to use these agents, they provide a safe and effective means to address anemia and its importance to our patients with cancer.

– David H. Henry