Motivated by her own cancer battle and passion for sharing valuable health information with the public, the iconic journalist traveled the country to get up close and personal with four breast cancer survivors also treated with strong chemotherapy. Together, they share their stories in order to inspire others to be an advocate and play an active role on their healthcare team. In the At Home with Joan campaign, Lunden reinforces the number one piece of advice she wished she knew before her diagnosis: that you are your own best advocate.
More than 1.6 million Americans will be diagnosed with cancer this year and among those that develop febrile neutropenia, more than 80 percent require hospitalization.2,3 According to the
The cornerstone of the campaign is a series of videos, available at www.AtHomeWithJoan.com, which feature one-on-one, intimate conversations at home between Lunden and breast cancer survivors discussing topics such as:
"While I've been on thousands of assignments throughout my career, I feel that perhaps my most important one is my current mission to educate and empower others to better understand their cancer and treatment options available so that they can play an active role in their care," said Lunden. "With so much information out there and critical decisions to make, it's normal to feel overwhelmed. By sharing our stories, we can learn from each other. It is my hope that these heartfelt conversations with courageous, inspiring survivors will provide candid perspectives and tips on how to advocate for yourself and ask the right questions early on."
At Home with Joan also features conversations between Lunden and
Like Lunden and the At Home with Joan participants, many newly diagnosed cancer patients will undergo strong chemotherapy and may be unaware of the potential risks associated with this type of treatment, including infection, as manifested by febrile neutropenia, and the important questions to ask their care team.
"While strong chemotherapy targets tumor cells that are rapidly dividing, what many patients don't realize is it can also affect other cells, including blood cells," said Dr. George. "As an oncologist, a reduction of white blood cell count is one of my biggest concerns because it can leave patients susceptible to infection and hospitalization. This is a serious topic that patients need to be aware of so they can speak to their doctor about treatment options to help prevent it."
"My hope as an oncology nurse is that each patient's healthcare team has discussed treatment options that help reduce the risk of infection, including Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim) Onpro®, which is applied the same day as a patient's chemotherapy appointment, so they can spend more time at home with their families," said Pryor. "These patients want to get back to their normal life and recover in the comfort of their own home. As a member of their support team, I want patients to know there are treatment options to help bring back that normalcy and comfort that frequent clinic and hospital visits interrupt."
To view the eight-part video series and learn more about upcoming community events featuring Lunden, fellow survivors and cancer experts, visit www.AtHomeWithJoan.com. Additional resources include a printable Doctor Discussion guide for patients to bring to their appointments with important questions to ask about treatment.
As the longest running female host ever on early morning television,
About Neulasta® (pegfilgrastim)
Neulasta is indicated to decrease the incidence of infection, as manifested by febrile neutropenia, in patients with nonmyeloid malignancies receiving myelosuppressive anti-cancer drugs associated with a clinically significant incidence of febrile neutropenia. Neulasta is not indicated for the mobilization of peripheral blood progenitor cells for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. In a pivotal clinical trial, in patients with nonmyeloid malignancies undergoing myelosuppressive chemotherapy associated with a clinically significant incidence of febrile neutropenia, treatment with Neulasta was shown to significantly reduce the incidence of febrile neutropenia.
Neulasta is administered by manual injection and is also available via the Neulasta Onpro kit, which was approved by the
Important Safety Information Regarding Neulasta®
Do not administer Neulasta® to patients with a history of serious allergic reactions to pegfilgrastim or filgrastim.
Splenic rupture, including fatal cases, can occur following the administration of Neulasta®. Evaluate for an enlarged spleen or splenic rupture in patients who report left upper abdominal or shoulder pain after receiving Neulasta®.
Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome
Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) can occur in patients receiving Neulasta®. Evaluate patients who develop fever and lung infiltrates or respiratory distress after receiving Neulasta for ARDS. Discontinue Neulasta® in patients with ARDS.
Serious Allergic Reactions
Serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, can occur in patients receiving Neulasta®. The majority of reported events occurred upon initial exposure. Allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, can recur within days after the discontinuation of initial anti-allergic treatment. Permanently discontinue Neulasta® in patients with serious allergic reactions.
Allergies to Acrylics
The on-body injector for Neulasta® uses acrylic adhesive. For patients who have reactions to acrylic adhesives, use of this product may result in a significant reaction.
Use in Patients with Sickle Cell Disorders
Severe sickle cell crises can occur in patients with sickle cell disorders receiving Neulasta®. Severe and sometimes fatal sickle cell crises can occur in patients with sickle cell disorders receiving filgrastim, the parent compound of pegfilgrastim.
Glomerulonephritis has been reported in patients receiving Neulasta®. The diagnoses were based upon azotemia, hematuria (microscopic and macroscopic), proteinuria, and renal biopsy. Generally, events of glomerulonephritis resolved after withdrawal of Neulasta®. If glomerulonephritis is suspected, evaluate for cause. If causality is likely, consider dose‐reduction or interruption of Neulasta®.
White blood cell counts of 100 x 109/L or greater have been observed in patients receiving pegfilgrastim. Monitoring of CBCs during pegfilgrastim therapy is recommended.
Capillary Leak Syndrome
Capillary leak syndrome has been reported after granulocyte colony‐stimulating factor (G‐CSF) administration, including Neulasta®, and is characterized by hypotension, hypoalbuminemia, edema, and hemoconcentration. Episodes vary in frequency, severity and may be life‐threatening if treatment is delayed. Patients who develop symptoms of capillary leak syndrome should be closely monitored and receive standard symptomatic treatment, which may include a need for intensive care.
Potential for Tumor Growth Stimulatory Effects on Malignant Cells
The granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) receptor, through which pegfilgrastim and filgrastim act, has been found on tumor cell lines. The possibility that pegfilgrastim acts as a growth factor for any tumor type, including myeloid malignancies and myelodysplasia, diseases for which pegfilgrastim is not approved, cannot be excluded. The most common adverse reactions (≥ 5% difference in incidence) in placebo-controlled clinical trials are bone pain and pain in extremity.
Please see additional Neulasta® Safety Information, by visiting www.amgen.com/medpro/products.html.
Please see the Neulasta® Full Prescribing Information by clicking here.
Amgen Oncology is committed to helping patients take on some of the toughest cancers, such as those that have been resistant to drugs, those that progress rapidly through the body and those where limited treatment options exist.
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