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Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 3924
Experience:  DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)
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My vet has recommended Arasep for my cat who has developed

Customer Question

My vet has recommended Arasep for my cat who has developed anemia. I have been unable to find a pet dosage (one vial) and only human dosages that run in excess of $3000. Do you have any suggestions where I might find this medication. It has to be kept refrigerated so it would have to be sent overnight on ice but I am willing to pay for it. Thanks for any assistance you can provide.
JA: I'll do all I can to help. What is the matter with your cat?
Customer: She has a low red blood cell count. She has chronic kidney disease. My vet recommends Arasep over the symthetic version because of the possibility of an auto immune reaction.
JA: What is the cat's name and age?
Customer: Sambuca. Likely in 14 years old. (She's a rescue I adopted 12 years ago.)
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Sambuca?
Customer: I just need a lead for where I can purchase the medication I need in a small dosage so that I can afford it.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
AranespAranesp: The concentration my Vet usually prescribes is 25 micrograms per mililiter in a one milimiter vial. She said it comes in MANY different concentrations in either 1 mL vials OR 0.4 mL prefilled syringes. The problem I have come across is that it is sold in cartons of 4 vials or syringes and no one is willing to sell just one vial or syringe.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 10 months ago.

You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 10 months ago.

May I suggest the less costly epoetin alpha (erythropoietin) which Sambuca's vet can call into Costco for you? Unless things have changed, Costco will sell single 2 mL multi-dose vials. If Aranesp must be prescribed as per the vet, Costco should still be able to obtain it for you but you'll need to give their pharmacy a call and check for availability

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
We tried Costco today. They only sell the full 4 vial dosage of Aranesp for $2,000. My Vet has had the best success with Aranesp and is concerned about using epoetin alpha because, as a synthetic hormone, it could cause an autoimmune response. A source for the epoetin alpha is not a problem. Do different Costco stores have different policies. We tried the one closest to me.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 10 months ago.

Thank you for the additional information. I don't believe that the pharmacies vary in that regard. It's true that antibody formation is seen in up to 70% of patients on epoetin alpha but careful observation and monitoring of my patient's hematocrit (PCV) avoids a crisis. Try human hospitals who might fill a prescription for just one vial of Aranesp.