Nplate is a medication that’s an Fc-peptide fusion protein. This is a type of artificial protein. It is used to spur the body to make more platelets in the blood. The platelets are the cells that allow blood to clot. This medication is used to keep patients from having bleeding episodes when they have a chronic case of immune thrombocytopenic purpura or ITP. This condition causes a lot of bleeding and happens when there aren’t enough platelets in the patient’s blood. There are various treatments for this problem, and Nplate is often used after others have been used but didn’t work. The drug is also used on patients who have had their spleens removed when this didn’t help with their ITP.

When patients have ITP, their bodies will destroy the platelets in the blood. This means that the blood won’t clot as it should. With such a low amount of platelet cells, a patient may take a long time for their blood to clot, leading to more easily bruising and bleeding. Taking this medication can give your blood more platelets by pushing the bone marrow to make more of them. Then, the blood will clot faster and keep the patient from excessive bleeding.

There are specific drugs that are given to patients with ITP first before Nplate is tried. These include corticosteroids that cause your immune system to have lower acidity. They also include immunoglobulin, a blood product that can significantly affect the immune system’s operation. This medication can be used on patients at least one year old.

Nplate Precautions and Warnings

Your doctor must know about your health problems and complete health history. Some patients shouldn’t take this medication because of their condition or other reasons. If you have a type of bone marrow cancer called myelodysplastic syndrome, you shouldn’t be prescribed this medication. If you take Nplate, it could make your condition get worse. This can make you develop acute myeloid leukemia, a kind of blood cell cancer. If you have MDS, make sure your doctor knows.

If you have bone marrow problems, you may be unable to take Nplate. This medication can cause you to develop more of a connective tissue called reticulin found in the bone marrow. When this happens, it can cause you to have abnormal blood cells or fewer healthy ones created by the bone marrow. If you have any bone marrow problems, please advise your doctor. You may be able to use this medication as long as you are closely monitored.

This medication also raises your risk of developing blood clots. It can cause you to have too many platelets. When this occurs, the patient has a higher risk of developing blood clots. If you have ever had a blood clot or you have a higher risk of it, you might not be prescribed this medication. If you are, you’ll need your platelet count monitored closely. You may need your dose adjusted if it gets too high.

If you have chronic liver disease, this might not be the proper medication for you. Nplate may cause you to have too many platelets. If this happens, you could likely develop a clot in the portal vein. This risk is higher in those who already have chronic liver disease. If this were to happen, it could cause enlargement of the spleen. It may also cause your stomach and esophagus to develop varicose veins.

If you’re pregnant, consult with your doctor about the possible risks of taking this medication. The risks are unknown, but some people may significantly need to take this medication. If you’re taking this medication, don’t breastfeed.

Nplate Side Effects

Severe side effects that can happen to some patients. These require you to either call your doctor to tell them about the problem or to get emergency medical care, whichever is necessary. Serious side effects include having changes in your bone marrow, getting blood clots, and having an allergic reaction to this medication.

Common side effects in children include bruising, mouth and throat pain, and upper respiratory infections.

If you have a mild allergic reaction to Nplate, you may have flushing, itchiness, and a skin rash. If you have a more serious allergic reaction that requires immediate medical care, you may have trouble breathing, swelling under your skin, or a swollen throat, mouth, or tongue.

There are a lot of common, mild side effects that patients can have when they take this medication. Common side effects often stop after a few days to a few weeks. Some of the most common effects patients experience include:

  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Insomnia
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Upset stomach
  • Pain in the shoulder, legs, or arms
  • Heartburn
  • Numbness or tingling in the feet or hands
  • Sinusitis
  • Cough
  • Diarrhea
  • Upper respiratory infections
  • Bronchitis
  • Throat or mouth pain
  • Nausea and vomiting

Nplate Drug Interactions

There aren’t any specific interactions that can happen between Nplate and another drug. However, ensure your doctor knows everything you take, including herbs and OTC remedies. It’s also a good idea to avoid drinking alcohol while you take this medication, especially in large quantities. Doing a lot of drinking can cause you to have a lower platelet count, and taking Nplate can interact with that effect.

Questions & Answers of Nplate 

Is Nplate a type of chemotherapy?

No, Nplant works in a very different way.

Can you drink alcohol while taking this medication?

A small amount of alcohol is acceptable. Small amounts don’t interact with this medication. However, drinking a lot of alcohol, especially if it’s done more than once, can change the number of platelets you have in your blood, and there can be serious effects from this.

What are the strengths and dosages of Nplate?

Nplate is available in single-dose vials. Its three strengths are available, including 125 mcg, 250 mcg, and 500 mcg. A nurse or doctor gives these injections once a week underneath the skin. It’s generally administered in a healthcare facility.

What does Nplate treat?

It’s a prescription drug that treats a condition called immune thrombocytopenic purpura, or ITP. The condition can cause a platelet count that’s too low in your blood. This medication spurs the bone marrow into making more platelets for better health.

Can you take Nplate orally?

No, it’s only available in an injectable form. Nurses and doctors administer it.

Is there any hair loss from taking this medication?

No, losing hair isn’t a side effect of Nplate.

Can you take Nplate while pregnant?

There aren’t any studies on it in pregnancy, so the risks are unknown. If the medication is highly needed, the doctor might prescribe it to a pregnant patient. It’s important not to breastfeed while you use this medication.

How long does it take this medication to work?

It gets to work right away after it’s administered. It can start making a difference in platelet counts at an average of about two weeks.

If you already have other bone marrow problems, can you take this drug?

This will be up to your doctor. Some doctors don’t like to use this with patients with bone marrow problems, but there may be a need for it that is more important than the possible risks. Talk to your doctor about any risks and benefits.

How often do you take Nplate?

It’s an injection that’s administered once a week. It’s injected under the skin.

Can people be allergic to this medication?

Yes, it can cause a mild allergic reaction or a serious one. A severe reaction is infrequent. It may cause trouble breathing, facial or mouth swelling, itchy skin, and other effects.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. It should not be taken as an endorsement of any specific medication or treatment. Individual health conditions and responses to treatment can vary greatly; therefore, this information should not be seen as a guarantee of safety, suitability, or effectiveness for any particular individual. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized medical advice and before making any decisions regarding your health or treatment plans.

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