Oak Park Hospital physician awarded research citation
The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of Recombinant Human Erythropoietin (rHuEPO) in long-term acute care patients showed that there was a significantly reduced need for blood transfusions in long-term acute care patients who received rHuEPO, which has been used for some 15 years for renal failure patients. It has also been used in the ICU for short-term patients. The study addresses the common problem of anemia in long-term acute care patients, resulting in an ongoing need for blood transfusions.
“Any time we can avoid the need for transfusions, it’s a benefit to the patient,” said Dr. Michael Silver. “While the blood supply is safer now than it has ever been, it’s always preferable when your body can make its own red blood cells.”
“rHuEPO had already been approved for AIDS, cancer, and pre-op patients, as well as renal failure, so we asked the question, ‘What about those who are chronically ill and debilitated?’ The good news was that these patients responded dramatically to the treatment, successfully making their own red blood cells no matter how ill they were. Only half as many patients who received the treatment needed transfusions, and those who did needed less.”
According to Silver the other benefits include the fact that rHuEPO, in use for 15 years, has proven to be extremely safe and no side effects were observed in the study. The beneficial effects start within days and last as long as two to three weeks, often carrying a patient through recovery.
Dr. Michael Silver is Associate Professor at RUSH-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center and RUSH Medical College.
Oak Park Hospital, a member of the RUSH System for Health, is located near the corner of Harlem Avenue and Madison Street in Oak Park. To learn more about any of the hospital’s programs or services, to find an Oak Park Hospital physician, or for information on upcoming lectures and health screenings, visit the hospital’s web site at www.oakparkhospital.org.
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