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What Is Peginesatide Used For?

Peginesatide is a long-acting drug given once a month to treat anemia caused by chronic kidney disease. It works by increasing the production of red blood cells by the bone marrow. Peginesatide is approved for use in adults only, and in combination with dialysis. There are also some off-label (unapproved) reasons to use this drug, such as treating anemia caused by other conditions.

In February 2013, peginesatide was pulled from the market (all of the product was recalled) to investigate reports of dangerous allergic reactions, including fatal anaphylactic reactions, which appear to be occurring more frequently than anticipated. This medication will not be available until further notice.

An Overview of Uses for Peginesatide

Peginesatide (Omontys®) is a prescription injection used to treat anemia caused by chronic kidney disease (CKD). It belongs to a group of medications known as erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs). It is a long-acting drug, given just once a month.
Anemia is a blood condition in which a person has an abnormally low number of red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen (O2) to tissues and organs throughout the body and enable them to use the energy from food. Without oxygen, these tissues and organs, particularly the heart and brain, may not function as well as they should.
Therefore, if you have anemia, you may tire easily and appear pale. Anemia may also contribute to heart problems. Some of the general anemia symptoms include:
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Not doing well in work or school
  • Low body temperature
  • Pale skin
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Irritability
  • Numbness or coldness in your hands and feet
  • Headache.
There are many different anemia types, as well as several different causes of anemia. Anemia can be caused by chronic kidney failure. The kidneys produce erythropoietin, a protein that stimulates the production of red blood cells. However, in chronic kidney failure, the kidneys do not produce enough erythropoietin, which leads to anemia.
Peginesatide is approved to treat anemia caused by chronic kidney disease. It is approved only for use during dialysis, as studies have suggested that dangerous side effects are more likely to occur in people who were not undergoing dialysis.
Anemia can also be caused by chemotherapy (see Chemotherapy and Anemia). In fact, anemia is one of the most common chemotherapy side effects. Peginesatide is not recommended for people undergoing chemotherapy, unless the anemia is clearly caused by chronic kidney disease and not because of the cancer or chemotherapy treatment.

Peginesatide Drug Information

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