FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (Sept. 24, 2010) – Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN) announced today that certain lots of EPOGEN® and PROCRIT® (Epoetin alfa) vials are being voluntarily recalled from specialty distributors, wholesalers, pharmacies and healthcare providers as a precaution. The product that is being recalled may contain extremely thin glass flakes (lamellae) that are barely visible in most cases. The lamellae result from the interaction of the formulation with glass vials over the shelf life of the product. The products are indicated for the treatment of anemia related to HIV therapy, chronic renal failure, and chemotherapy.
Evaluations by Amgen and Centocor Ortho Biotech Products, L.P. found a low potential to impact patients who may have received the affected product. The potential serious adverse events resulting from the use of a sterile injectable product with particulates by the intravenous route include embolic, thrombotic and other vascular events (e.g., phlebitis), and by the subcutaneous route include foreign body granuloma, local injection site reactions, and increased immunogenicity. To date, there have been no complaints or adverse events reported which can be directly attributed to the presence of glass lamellae.
Adverse events related to EPOGEN should be reported to 1-800-77-AMGEN. Adverse events related to PROCRIT should be reported to 1-800-547-6446. Consumers with questions regarding this recall can contact Amgen at 1-800-77-AMGEN (open 24 hours per day, 7 days per week) or Centocor Ortho Biotech Products at 1-800-547-6446 (open 24 hours per day, 7 days per week).
Consumers should contact their physician or healthcare provider if they have experienced any problems that may be related to taking or using this drug product. Adverse events that may be related to the use of this product may also be reported to the United States Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting Program either online, by regular mail or by fax:
Amgen and Centocor Ortho Biotech Products and their affiliate companies have initiated recall letters and other communication to immediately inform relevant stakeholders, including healthcare professionals, distributors, wholesalers and pharmacies of the voluntary recall. The letters include instructions to return the referenced product to the returned goods service provider.
The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the United States Food and Drug Administration.
EPOGEN and PROCRIT are manufactured in the United States by Amgen. EPOGEN is sold by Amgen in the United States. Centocor Ortho Biotech Products is the authorized distributor of PROCRIT in the United States.
About EPOGEN (Epoetin alfa)
EPOGEN is indicated for the treatment of anemia in patients with chronic renal failure on dialysis. EPOGEN is indicated to elevate or maintain the red blood cell (RBC) level and to decrease the need for transfusions in these patients.
About PROCRIT (Epoetin alfa)
PROCRIT is used for the treatment of anemia in patients with most types of cancer receiving chemotherapy, with chronic renal failure who are on dialysis and those who are not on dialysis, who are being treated with zidovudine for HIV infection, and to reduce the need for transfusion in anemic patients who are scheduled for elective noncardiac, nonvascular surgery. Depending on the country in which Epoetin alfa is marketed, these indications may differ.
PROCRIT is licensed from Amgen and manufactured by Amgen in Puerto Rico.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
WARNINGS: INCREASED MORTALITY, SERIOUS CARDIOVASCULAR EVENTS, THROMBOEMBOLIC EVENTS, STROKE and INCREASED RISK OF TUMOR PROGRESSION OR RECURRENCE
Chronic Renal Failure:
Perisurgery: EPOGEN®/PROCRIT® (Epoetin alfa) increased the rate of deep venous thromboses in patients not receiving prophylactic anticoagulation. Consider deep venous thrombosis prophylaxis.
(See WARNINGS: Increased Mortality, Serious Cardiovascular Events, Thromboembolic Events, and Stroke, WARNINGS: Increased Mortality and/or Increased Risk of Tumor Progression or Recurrence, INDICATIONS AND USAGE, and DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION.)
Amgen discovers, develops, manufactures and delivers innovative human therapeutics. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen was one of the first companies to realize the new science's promise by bringing safe and effective medicines from lab, to manufacturing plant, to patient. Amgen therapeutics have changed the practice of medicine, helping millions of people around the world in the fight against cancer, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis and other serious illnesses. With a deep and broad pipeline of potential new medicines, Amgen remains committed to advancing science to dramatically improve people's lives. To learn more about our pioneering science and our vital medicines, visit http://www.amgen.com/ .
This news release contains forward-looking statements that are based on management's current expectations and beliefs and are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements, including estimates of revenues, operating margins, capital expenditures, cash, other financial metrics, expected legal, arbitration, political, regulatory or clinical results or practices, customer and prescriber patterns or practices, reimbursement activities and outcomes and other such estimates and results. Forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties, including those discussed below and more fully described in the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reports filed by Amgen, including Amgen's most recent annual report on Form 10-K and most recent periodic reports on Form 10-Q and Form 8-K. Please refer to Amgen's most recent Forms 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K for additional information on the uncertainties and risk factors related to our business. Unless otherwise noted, Amgen is providing this information as of Sept. 24, 2010 and expressly disclaims any duty to update information contained in this news release.
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List of EPOGEN lots subject to the voluntary recall:
List of PROCRIT lots subject to the voluntary recall: