Steven R. Alexander, MD

Publication Details

  • PEDIATRIC USES OF RECOMBINANT-HUMAN-ERYTHROPOIETIN - THE OUTLOOK IN 1991 AMERICAN JOURNAL OF KIDNEY DISEASES Alexander, S. R. 1991; 18 (4): 42-53

    Abstract:

    Extensive clinical studies have documented the effectiveness of recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) in correcting the anemia of adult dialysis patients, but the safety and efficacy of rHuEPO in children with renal anemia cannot yet be confirmed, due to the relative deficiency of reported studies involving pediatric subjects. To date, published experience with rHuEPO therapy in children has totaled 257 patients, although the majority of these reports have appeared only as abstracts. Overall experience has been favorable, with renal anemia and transfusion dependency successfully resolved in almost all pediatric patients reported. However, controlled clinical trials have not been performed, so it is not yet possible to clearly define the risks associated with rHuEPO therapy in children. Hypertension appears to occur or become worse in up to one third of treated children, but it is unclear to what extent rHuEPO therapy is accompanied by an increased risk of seizures, thrombosis of vascular access, hyperkalemia, hyperphosphatemia, or peritonitis (when administered via the intraperitoneal route). Only preliminary and somewhat conjectural recommendations can be offered regarding pediatric rHuEPO dosing, route of administration, special precautions, and adjunctive monitoring and therapy. Fortunately, a multicenter controlled clinical trial is underway that is designed to address these issues. Because the harmful effects of renal anemia are typically more profound for children than they are for adults, the benefits of rHuEPO promise to be even greater among pediatric patients. Whether rHuEPO therapy will substantially improve growth and neurologic and psychosocial development remains to be seen, but the potential is there for rHuEPO to dramatically improve the lives of children who suffer from the effects of the anemia of chronic renal failure. Other non-renal anemias that afflict pediatric patients, such as the anemia of prematurity, also may be amenable to rHuEPO therapy.

    View details for Web of Science ID A1991GK19700009

    View details for PubMedID 1928079

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