Neupogen is a drug used to stimulate white blood cell production. The most common of the side effects of Neupogen is bone pain after multiple injections, and reactions in the skin at the injection site, although other, more serious side effects can also occur. Note that Neuopgen is the brand name which the pharmaceutical company Amgen uses to market the drug filgrastim. The same drug is also made available under other brand names by Reliance (Religrast), Zenotech (Nugraf), and Raichem (Shilgrast) pharmaceutical companies.
Neupogen is administered in order to stimulate the production of neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, in the bone marrow. The condition of insufficient or absent neutrophil production is known as neutropenia, and can be caused by radiation or chemotherapy used in the treatment of cancer, as well as being a result of a bone marrow transplant. In such cases neupogen can help overcome damage done to the bone marrow by these other treatments.
The most common of the side effects of Neupogen is bone pain, which can be relieved with common pain relief medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol). However, common side effects also include: fever, skin rash, diarrhea, nose bleeds, and a feeling of weakness.
Local reactions to the injection may include: skin redness, swelling, or bruising. You should notify your doctor of these side effects of neupogen if they are particularly serious or if they persist rather than subsiding as you continue your course of treatment.
In addition, several side effects of Neupogen are not common but indicate potentially serious reactions to the drug. You should contact your doctor immediately if you notice blood in your urine, experience bloody vomit, have a fast heartbeat (tachycardia), or develop a fever, joint pain, or have difficulty breathing. Any of these side effects of Neupogen are an indication that you may need to adjust or discontinue treatment, but these decisions need to be made immediately by a medical professional.
A rare but very serious side effect of neupogen is spleen damage, which can be life-threatening. Abdominal or shoulder pain when taking neupogen are a reason to consider seeking immediate medical attention. Difficulty breathing may also be a sign of acute respiratory distress, and therefore also requires prompt medical attention.
It is also possible to experience an allergic reaction to neupogen, as with many other drugs. Shortness of breath, face or throat swelling, and skin hives are side effects of neupogen which may indicate an allergic reaction. Suspected allergies need to be discussed with your doctor and pharmacist so that your treatment can be adjusted or discontinued as necessary.
The above discussion of side effects of neupogen was compiled from publicly available sources as a general guide. However, it is vital to always discuss side effects of neupogen and other medications with your doctor, who is qualified to give you professional medical advice, and to follow his or her specific instructions.
– Sources and Further Reading –
Centers for Disease Control (CDC). “Facts about Neupogen.”
National Institutes of Health. “Filgrastim Injection: MedlinePlus Drug Information.”
WebMD.com. “Neupogen Inj – Uses, Side Effects, Interactions.”