A A A

Indication

Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) is a prescription medication used to reduce the risk of infection (initially marked by fever) in patients with some tumors receiving strong chemotherapy that decreases the number of infection-fighting white blood cells.

Important Safety Information

Who should not take Neulasta®?
Do not take Neulasta® if you have had an allergic reaction to Neulasta® or to NEUPOGEN® (Filgrastim).

What should I tell my health care provider before taking Neulasta®?
If you have a sickle cell disorder, make sure your doctor knows about it before using Neulasta®.

What are possible serious side effects of Neulasta®?
  • Spleen Rupture. Your spleen may become enlarged and can rupture while taking Neulasta®. A ruptured spleen can cause death. The spleen is located in the upper left section of your stomach area. Call your doctor right away if you have pain in the left upper stomach area or left shoulder tip area. This pain could mean your spleen is enlarged or ruptured.
  • A serious lung problem called acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Call your doctor or seek emergency care right away if you have shortness of breath, trouble breathing, or a fast rate of breathing.
  • Serious Allergic Reactions. Neulasta® can cause serious allergic reactions. These reactions can cause shortness of breath, wheezing, dizziness, swelling around the mouth or eyes, fast pulse, sweating, and hives. If you start to have any of these symptoms, call your doctor or seek emergency care right away. If you have an allergic reaction during the injection of Neulasta®, stop the injection. Call your doctor right away.
  • Sickle Cell Crises. You may have a serious sickle cell crisis if you have a sickle cell disorder and take Neulasta®. Serious and sometimes fatal sickle cell crises can occur in patients with sickle cell disorders receiving Filgrastim, a medicine similar to Neulasta®. Call your doctor right away if you have symptoms of sickle cell crisis such as pain or difficulty breathing.

What are the most common side effects of Neulasta®?
The most common side effect you may experience is aching in the bones and muscles. If this happens, it can usually be relieved with a nonaspirin pain reliever, such as acetaminophen.

What important information do I need to know about receiving Neulasta®?
  • Occasionally pain and redness may occur at the injection site. If there is a lump, swelling, or bruising at the injection site that does not go away, talk to the doctor.
  • Neulasta® should only be injected on the day the doctor has determined and should not be injected until approximately 24 hours after receiving chemotherapy.
  • The needle cover on the single-use prefilled syringe contains dry natural rubber (latex), which should not be handled by persons sensitive to this substance.

If you have any questions about this information, be sure to discuss them with your doctor. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

For more information, please see the Neulasta® Patient Product Information and Prescribing Information.

White Blood Cell Counts

Neulasta® is a prescription medication that can help reduce your risk of infectionInfection—An invasion of microorganisms such as bacteria or viruses that have the ability to multiply and cause disease. while on strong chemotherapyChemotherapy—The use of drugs to destroy cancer cells. A person on chemotherapy may take one drug or a combination of drugs. Most often these drugs are given by vein using intravenous (IV) infusion. Some can be taken by mouth or given as a shot. by supporting your body’s natural defenses. It does this by boosting the number of certain infection-fighting white blood cellsWhite blood cell (WBC)—A white blood cell is one of the three main types of blood cells. They are produced in the bone marrow and released into the blood. White blood cells are responsible for fighting infection. There are several kinds of white blood cells, including monocytes, lymphocytes, neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils., called neutrophils.

How Neulasta® Works

How Neulasta® Works: Video Transcript

Cancer consists of cells that are different from normal cells—they can divide very quickly and grow out of control.

Chemotherapy is one of many options available to fight cancer. It works by stopping or slowing down the growth of cancer cells.

Unfortunately, while the chemotherapy is fighting cancer cells, it can also harm normal cells in the body that divide rapidly. Normal healthy cells that can be damaged by chemotherapy include cells that cause your hair to grow, cells that line your stomach and intestines, and white blood cells that help our bodies fight infections. So a person undergoing strong chemotherapy may be more susceptible to infection.

Neutrophils are a type of white blood cell that fight infections, so they’re particularly important for a person receiving certain types of chemo.

Our bodies make a natural protein that signals the body to make white blood cells. There are medicines that function in a way that is similar to your body’s proteins. Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) is one of these medicines. It is called a white blood cell booster that help your body produce more white blood cells.

Indication

Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) is a prescription medication used to reduce the risk of infection (initially marked by fever) in patients with some tumors receiving strong chemotherapy that decreases the number of infection-fighting white blood cells.

Neulasta® works the same way as the protein that is made in the body. It acts on the cells in our bone marrow that would naturally develop to become white blood cells.

When Neulasta® is given, these cells start dividing rapidly, which means there’s a large increase in the number of new white blood cells that are formed.

The newly created white blood cells mature, they develop sacs that contain the substances needed to kill infection-causing bacteria.

Normally, it takes between 5 to 7 days for white blood cells to finish maturing. When a white-cell booster is given, however, white blood cells may finish maturing in less than one day and be released from the bone marrow into the blood.

Important Safety Information

Who should not take Neulasta®?
Do not take Neulasta® if you have had an allergic reaction to Neulasta® or to NEUPOGEN® (Filgrastim).

What should I tell my health care provider before taking Neulasta®?
If you have a sickle cell disorder, make sure that your doctor knows about it before using Neulasta®.

Neulasta® stays in the body for a long time, because the molecule is too large to be eliminated primarily by the kidney. As the number of white blood cells increases, Neulasta® is broken down by the white blood cells themselves and removed.

Because of this process, patients getting strong chemotherapy need only one injection of Neulasta® per chemotherapy cycle.

What are possible serious side effects of Neulasta®?
  • Spleen Rupture. Your spleen may become enlarged and can rupture while taking Neulasta®. A ruptured spleen can cause death. The spleen is located in the upper left section of your stomach area. Call your doctor right away if you have pain in the left upper stomach area or left shoulder tip area. This pain could mean your spleen is enlarged or ruptured.
  • A serious lung problem called acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Call your doctor or seek emergency care right away if you have shortness of breath, trouble breathing, or a fast rate of breathing.
  • Serious Allergic Reactions. Neulasta® can cause serious allergic reactions. These reactions can cause shortness of breath, wheezing, dizziness, swelling around the mouth or eyes, fast pulse, sweating, and hives. If you start to have any of these symptoms, call your doctor or seek emergency care right away. If you have an allergic reaction during the injection of Neulasta®, stop the injection. Call your doctor right away.
  • Sickle Cell Crises. You may have a serious sickle cell crisis if you have a sickle cell disorder and take Neulasta®. Serious and sometimes fatal sickle cell crises can occur in patients with sickle cell disorders receiving Filgrastim, a medicine similar to Neulasta®. Call your doctor right away if you have symptoms of sickle cell crisis such as pain or difficulty breathing.

What are the most common side effects of Neulasta®?
The most common side effect you may experience is aching in the bones and muscles. If this happens, it can usually be relieved with a nonaspirin pain reliever, such as acetaminophen.

What important information do I need to know about receiving Neulasta®?
  • Occasionally pain and redness may occur at the injection site. If there is a lump, swelling, or bruising at the injection site that does not go away, talk to the doctor.
  • Neulasta® should only be injected on the day the doctor has determined and should not be injected until approximately 24 hours after receiving chemotherapy.
  • The needle cover on the single-use prefilled syringe contains dry natural rubber (latex), which should not be handled by persons sensitive to this substance.

If you have any questions about this information, be sure to discuss them with your doctor. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Please see Neulasta® Patient Product Information and Prescribing Information.

©2011 Amgen. All rights reserved. 62362-R1-V1

Neulasta® works as a white cell booster. Neulasta® works similarly to a protein that is made in the body. It acts on the cells in our bone marrow to increase the number of new white blood cells that are formed.

  • An improvement in your white blood cell counts will show that Neulasta® is working
  • Neulasta® helps protect your natural defenses with just 1 injection per cycle of chemo. It is given approximately 24 hours after you receive chemo2

FIND OUT IF NEULASTA® COULD BE RIGHT FOR YOU »

Indication

Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) is a prescription medication used to reduce the risk of infection (initially marked by fever) in patients with some tumors receiving strong chemotherapy that decreases the number of infection-fighting white blood cells.

Important Safety Information

Who should not take Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim)?
Do not take Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) if you have had an allergic reaction to Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) or to NEUPOGEN® (Filgrastim).

What should I tell my health care provider before taking Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim)?
If you have a sickle cell disorder, make sure your doctor knows about it before using Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim).

What are possible serious side effects of Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim)?
  • Spleen Rupture. Your spleen may become enlarged and can rupture while taking Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim). A ruptured spleen can cause death. The spleen is located in the upper left section of your stomach area. Call your doctor right away if you have pain in the left upper stomach area or left shoulder tip area. This pain could mean your spleen is enlarged or ruptured.
  • A serious lung problem called acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Call your doctor or seek emergency care right away if you have shortness of breath, trouble breathing, or a fast rate of breathing.
  • Serious Allergic Reactions. Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) can cause serious allergic reactions. These reactions can cause shortness of breath, wheezing, dizziness, swelling around the mouth or eyes, fast pulse, sweating, and hives. If you start to have any of these symptoms, call your doctor or seek emergency care right away. If you have an allergic reaction during the injection of Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim), stop the injection. Call your doctor right away.
  • Sickle Cell Crises. You may have a serious sickle cell crisis if you have a sickle cell disorder and take Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim). Serious and sometimes fatal sickle cell crises can occur in patients with sickle cell disorders receiving Filgrastim, a medicine similar to Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim). Call your doctor right away if you have symptoms of sickle cell crisis such as pain or difficulty breathing.

What are the most common side effects of Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim)?
The most common side effect you may experience is aching in the bones and muscles. If this happens, it can usually be relieved with a nonaspirin pain reliever, such as acetaminophen.

What important information do I need to know about receiving Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim)?
  • Occasionally pain and redness may occur at the injection site. If there is a lump, swelling, or bruising at the injection site that does not go away, talk to the doctor.
  • Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) should only be injected on the day the doctor has determined and should not be injected until approximately 24 hours after receiving chemotherapy.
  • The needle cover on the single-use prefilled syringe contains dry natural rubber (latex), which should not be handled by persons sensitive to this substance.

If you have any questions about this information, be sure to discuss them with your doctor. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

For more information, please see the Neulasta® Patient Product Information and Prescribing Information.

* Individual cancer patients depicted on this website are compensated spokespeople for Amgen, Inc.

References:

  1. Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) prescribing information, Amgen. V13, 2011.
  2. Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) patient product information, Amgen. V8.0, 2010.