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Thyrogen Shortage

Baldy's picture
Baldy
Posts: 225
Joined: Mar 2011

Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,

Has anyone heard the latest on the Thyrogen shortage? The last I read, Genzyme was saying they were ready to restart production. But the same story also said Genzyme has said this before and not been able to do so. I think this was a week ago. I was wondering if anyone knew if they had really restarted.

Alan

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

even if they start production today there will be a shortage for a few months. it happens after every shutdown.

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

--- From http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/DrugSafety/DrugShortages/default.htm ---
Then select Current Drug Shortages

Thyrogen (thyrotropin alfa) injection 1.1mg/vial (updated 7/14/2011)

Company - Genzyme Corporation 1-800-745-4447
Reason - Temporary Delays
Related Information - A limited supply of Thyrogen was released to the U.S. market in June. Due to unexpected delays in the release of three lots of Thyrogen, a stock-out is expected in July and will persist until these lots are released. Temporary shipment delays will then continue to occur for the remainder of 2011 and throughout 2012.
----

The Genzyme corporation website does not have any updates on this

they are the only manufacture in the US, I do not have the info for other countries so yes there is a Thyrogen shortage AGAIN... this does not mean you will not be able to get it just means it will be harder for you to get it or may have to delay testing if you must do the Thyrogen shots.

The FDA is the best place i could find for drug shortage info if anyone else has better info or a better site please share.

Craig

lori d
Posts: 6
Joined: Dec 2009

yes.. theres a shortage. i had been in the "que" since april. my dr. wrote the script for it and sent it off so when it was back in production, i would be getting it.
he received my thyrogen 2 weeks ago.. i got my shots last week...along with my scans.
so - i would think you'd want to get on the list!
good luck.

lori d
Posts: 6
Joined: Dec 2009

yes.. theres a shortage. i had been in the "que" since april. my dr. wrote the script for it and sent it off so when it was back in production, i would be getting it.
he received my thyrogen 2 weeks ago.. i got my shots last week...along with my scans.
so - i would think you'd want to get on the list!
good luck.

Baldy's picture
Baldy
Posts: 225
Joined: Mar 2011

I'm on the list, the problem is I was put on it in July. Still, he ordered the scan for December and his scheduler thinks I'll only have to wait until January. So, I won't be that inconvenienced.

Thanks,
Alan

teamwink
Posts: 97
Joined: May 2011

I was in line since May and I just got word today that my dose is in (fingers crossed, right?!). Oddly enough, I have gotten on some sort of email list that is from the Thyrogen company and I received a message last week stating that Thyrogen is again out and docs should only refer patients who medically HAD to have it. The email said that if the patient did not absolutely need it, then they should go the hypo route (in short). Hope this is helpful!

CherylMike
Posts: 118
Joined: Oct 2009

Hello All~ I have my 1 year scan coming up and have followed your threads on the thyrogen shortage. My husband passed away of head and neck cancer 2 years ago in October. His company has provided me with excellent insurance. However, it runs out the last day of October. I want to make sure and have my scan done under this insurance and leave myself time if any follow up care is needed (more RAI or surgery). My doctor ordered the thyrogen, but has said it is on back order and should be here in a week. I am wondering if I should call and ask her to let me go the hyro-thyroid route. This way I would be sure to have my medical tests covered. Any thoughts? Thanks!

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

you probably should talk to your doctor and see if they are sure they will get the Thyrogen and your concern about insurance ending and if she thinks there is a possibility of delay in Thyrogen.

Remember if you go the Hypo-thyroid route you’re probably going to need help with life and maybe even transport to the hospital. (I don’t know how the hypo route treats you).

I put my scan off cause there was time to but I don’t think you have the time to wait.

If you think you can handle the hypo route it may be the best way in your situation.

Also remember once you tell the doc your going hypo route the Thyrogen shots even if they come in on time will go to someone else probably so you won’t be able to swap back.

Craig

MarinMark
Posts: 139
Joined: Aug 2011

I'm in Marin county just north of San Francisco. Anyone have an update on availability of thyrogen ? How much does it cost without insurance ?

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

thyrogen is avalable just in short supply...

depending on your treatment center and alot of other things will determine if it is avalible

unforguntaly here is the bad news for those without insurance

its somewere around $5000 per shot. and you will need 2...

so to be honest for most jobs it may be cheaper to just go the 2-3 weeks with vacation no pay than do the shots if you do not have insurance.

CherylMike
Posts: 118
Joined: Oct 2009

My doctor told me that the thyrogen is on back order for "months". Because my insurance is "up" in October, I elected to take the hypothyroid route for my scan. My doctor told me the shots were $800 a shot and I would need two (I live in AZ). Hope this helps

MarinMark
Posts: 139
Joined: Aug 2011

Did you go "hypo" ? What was it like ?

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

i think CheryMike is currently on LID and probably starting the feelings of Hypo-Hell.

its all because his insurance runs out in October that he can not wait for thyrogen.

CherylMike
Posts: 118
Joined: Oct 2009

My husband passed away of head and neck cancer on 10-31-09. The company he worked for paid for my health insurance for 2 years - which means it is up in October. My doctor had me scheduled for the thyrogen injectins, but was not sure when they would be available due to the backlog. I elected to go hypothyroid as I did not want to take the chance and have the insurance run out. I have gone the hypothyroid route before (after my TT, I went hypothyroid before my radiation treatment). I must say, it is harder this time (not sure why). I do ache, am really tired and lightheaded. I also have the "foggy brain" thing going. I am lucky that my 25 year old daughter is staying with me. Her brother is 15 and she is able to drive him when he needs a ride. I have been hypothyroid for 10 days now and the only thing I will not do is drive (I also tried jogging 3 miles on Thursday-which I have been doing for a long time- and really ached all day Friday.) I am able to function ok, just really sleepy and tasks take me a little longer to complete. I am just very thankful that this cancer that I have can be treated. I watched my husband fight for 2 years (his orginal prognosis was 3 to 6 months). He was in the most unimaginable pain and yet he was mostly concerned with myself and our children. I think having watched him makes me have a different take on what I am going through. Take care~cheryl

manchesterfour
Posts: 1
Joined: Sep 2011

I just came from my 6 month check up, and due to the thyrogen shortage, my scan has been delayed. My thyroid was removed almost 2 years ago due to cancer and as I'm feeling good, my doctor agreed not to make me go hypothyroid. I can't imagine what it must be like. I hope the shortage ends soon, especially for those requiring post-operative RAI therapy :(

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