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Injectable Dexamethasone Shortage

There is currently a nationwide shortage of injectable Dexamethasone (Decadron) due to manufacturing difficulties and a shortage of raw material needed in its manufacturing. This shortage may last for more than a year. The raw material shortage stems from manufacturers switching from
beef protein sources to plant sources, a change that requires FDA approval. Several manufacturers are currently out of stock and have not announced a date for product release. According to the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), Methylpred-nisolone (Solu-Medrol) may be an acceptable alternative in specific situations, although there are few data that specifically address its use. ASHP does not endorse or recommend the use of any particular drug, makes no representations or warranties of merchantability and/or fitness for a particular purpose, and specifically disclaims all such warranties. Oral dexamethasone products are currently not affected by this shortage. Oral dexamethasone is as effective as injectable dexamethasone; however, the oral route may not be practical for all patients. Decisions regarding the use of drugs and drug therapies are complex medical decisions and must be discussed with your healthcare professional.

Inquiring Minds Want to Know

The IMF has received inquiries about Actonel (risedronate), a bisphosphonate from Procter and Gamble currently being advertised as being proven to prevent bone fractures. This drug is primarily being used to treat osteoporosis in post-menopausal women as well as steroid-induced, and Paget?s disease. No data is available regarding Actonel use in multiple myeloma.

Two New Myeloma Support Groups

The IMF is pleased to welcome:

  • Morristown, NJ Support Group ? This group meets twice per month on the 2nd and 4th Monday, from 1:30PM to 3:00PM, in the conference room of the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center of Morristown Memorial Hospital. For more information, please call Beth Batdorf at (973)971-4269 or Ruth Lin at (973)971-7742.
  • Halifax, NS, Canada Support Group ? This group meets the 1st Thursday of the month at ?The Lodge That Gives? in Halifax, Nova Scotia. For more information, please contact Greg Macrae of the Canadian Cancer Society at (902) 423-6183 or greg.macrae@ns.cancer.ca

IMF Adds 40th Scientific Advisor

Gareth Morgan, Ph.D. of the University of Leeds, United Kingdom, has joined the IMF Scientific Advisory Board which now includes 40 of the world?s top myeloma experts. Prof. Morgan has a particular interest in the genetics and epidemiology of myeloma and related disorders. A valued participant of the IMF Myeloma Think Tank 2000 and the ?What Causes Myeloma? workshop in Banff, Prof. Morgan has been a supporter of IMF (UK) and the UK Myeloma Forum.

Our Family is Growing

The IMF has a new staff member. Pam Jones, a native of Alabama, has joined our Development team to spearhead the Corporate Partnerships program. She has spent the last five years in the fundraising arena, most recently as Sponsorship Director for McMillan Associates, a special events consulting firm. To share your ideas and suggestions with Pam, please e-mail pjones@myeloma.org or call (800) 452-CURE.
Please join us in welcoming Pam aboard!

Health Insurance Info on the Web

The Georgetown University Institute for Health Care Research & Policy has written A Consumer?s Guide for Getting & Keeping Health Insurance for each state and the District of Columbia. The guides are available at http://www.healthinsuranceinfo.net. The California guide is also available in Spanish.

Toronto Support Group Welcomes the IMF

IMF President Susie Novis and Chairman of the Board Prof. Brian G.M. Durie continued the tradition of visiting myeloma support groups around the country. They recieved a warm welcome from the members of the Toronto & District Multiple Myeloma Support Group.

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