Darbepoetin alfa (Aranesp) for treatment of anaemia in adults with low or intermediate-1-risk myelodysplastic syndromes

August 2017
Technology Description:

Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are a group of blood disorders, in which the bone marrow does not produce enough healthy red blood cells, white blood cells and/or platelets. Faulty cells often die earlier than normal cells and the body destroys some abnormal cells, leaving the patient with low blood counts. This can result in anaemia (not enough haemoglobin or fewer red blood cells). MDS usually occurs in people older than 65 years. Symptoms include tiredness, unusual bleeding or being short of breath. MDS can occur because of genetic syndromes, smoking, or as a treatment-related MDS after cancer therapy.

Darbepoetin alfa may, if licensed, reduce the incidence of red blood cell transfusions in anaemic patients with low and intermediate-1 risk MDS and improve quality of life.