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Prevents infection during chemotherapy.

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Prescription onlyNo lower cost generic available

Our pharmacists’ bottom line

Neulasta can lower your risk of infection during chemotherapy, and the injections are less frequent than some alternatives.

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  • Neulasta has a longer duration of effect compared to a similar medicine, Neupogen. It's a larger molecule so it stays in the body longer and is slowly removed by the kidney.
  • Only needs to be given once with each chemotherapy cycle compared to daily injections.
  • Studies show less people who took Neulasta had fever with low white blood cell count (neutropenia) compared to people who didn't take it initially. They went to the hospital less and needed less intravenous medicine to fight infections.
  • If you decide not to self-inject and don't have someone to do it for you, you'll need to have your doctor or trained medical staff give you each dose.
  • You'll need to properly dispose of the needle and syringe in a special (FDA-approved) sharps container.

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Side effects for Neulasta (Pegfilgrastim)

Manufacturers don’t say how common these side effects are

  • Acute respiratory distress syndrome
  • Immunogenicity
  • Serious allergic reactions
  • Splenic rupture

What to expect when you start Neulasta (Pegfilgrastim)

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Tips from our pharmacists
  • Neulasta stimulates a certain type of white blood cell important in fighting infection. It's injected under the skin (subcutaneous) beginning 24-72 hours after you finish your cancer medicine treatment.
  • Pain or redness in the area of injection is common. Let your doctor know if you notice a lump, swelling, or bruising that doesn't go away.
  • Most common side effect is aches/pain in your muscles and bones. Take Tylenol or other non-aspirin pain reliever.
  • Serious and life-threatening spleen, lung, allergic reactions and sickle cell crisis can happen immediately, days or months after starting Neulasta.
  • Use effective birth control while you're taking Neulasta. If you do become pregnant enroll in Amgen's Pregnancy Surveillance Program.
  • Tell your doctor if you have an allergy to latex. The prefilled syringe needle cover contains a latex product.
  • Store Neulasta in the refrigerator (not in the freezer), protect from light and don't shake it. For a more comfortable injection, leave the syringe at room temperature for 30 minutes before injecting.
  • Don't inject if Neulasta contains any particles, is discolored or foamy.
  • Don't inject into skin that's red, bruised or irritated. Rotate your injection areas using front of the thigh, outer area of upper arms or lower part of your belly (not around belly button).
  • Store away from children and dispose of used syringes or syringes left at room temperature for more than 48 hours in a protective (Sharps) container. DON'T throw in the trash.

Risks and Warnings for Neulasta (Pegfilgrastim)

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    • Higher risk if:
    • Allergy to filgrastim

    Neulasta (Pegfilgrastim) has been reported to cause hypersensitivity reactions (severe rash, trouble breathing) and angioedema (life-threatening condition with swelling with or without hives). Most cases happened right away, but it can happen days after you stop the medicine even if you were treated with anti-allergy medicine. If you notice these symptoms after your injection or days later, call your doctor and get medical care right away.

Means that some groups have a high risk of experiencing this side effect

Tips from pharmacists and people taking Neulasta (Pegfilgrastim)

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The FDA category for this medication is C. It is advised that you: Weigh risks vs. benefits
Kidneys & liver
  • Upsides and downsides from our pharmacists
  • Neulasta has a longer duration of effect compared to a similar medicine, Neupogen. It's a larger molecule so it stays in the body longer and is slowly removed by the kidney.