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Brand Name: Thyrogen®
Active Ingredient:   thyrotropin alfa
Strength(s): 0.9mg/ml
Dosage Form(s):   Intramuscular Injection
Company Name:    Genzyme Corporation
Availability:         Prescription only
*Date Approved by FDA:   November 30, 1998
*Approval by FDA does not mean that the drug is available for consumers at this time.

What is Thyrogen used for? Thyrogen is used as an additional diagnostic tool for detecting blood levels of thyroglobulin with or without radioiodine imaging in the follow-up of patients with certain types of thyroid cancer.

Testing with Thyrogen may be used in the following situations:

  1. In patients with an undetectable thyroglobulin on thyroid hormone suppressive therapy, to exclude the diagnosis of residual or recurrent thyroid cancer.
  2. In patients requiring blood thyroglobulin testing and radioiodine imaging who are unwilling to undergo thyroid hormone withdrawal testing and whose doctor believes that using a less sensitive test is appropriate.
  3. In patients who either do not have a sufficient thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) blood level in response to thyroid hormone withdrawal or in whom withdrawal is not advised.

General Precautions with Thyrogen: 

  • Even when Thyrogen-stimulated thyroglobulin testing is done with radioiodine imaging, there is a meaningful risk of missing the existence of thyroid cancer or of underestimating the disease. Thyroid hormone withdrawal testing with radioiodine imaging remains the standard diagnostic test to assess the presence, location and extent of thyroid cancer.
  • Tell your doctor if you have been treated with bovine TSH in the past and if you experienced an allergic reaction to bovine TSH.
  • Thyrogen can cause a temporary but significant increase in the level of thyroid hormone in your blood. Therefore, your doctor will monitor you more closely if you have a history of heart problems and if you have thyroid tissue remaining in your body.

What should I tell my doctor or health care provider?

Tell your health care provider if you are trying to become pregnant, are already pregnant, or are breast-feeding.

What are some possible side effects of Thyrogen? (This is NOT a complete list of side effects reported with Thyrogen. Your health care provider can discuss with you a more complete list of side effects.)  

  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Weakness

For more detailed information about Thyrogen, ask your health care provider.

Posted: 4/1/99
Revised: 7/25/00


Back to Drug Side Effects

source: FDA

last update: December 2004

This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this material to diagnose or treat a health condition or disease without consulting with your healthcare provider.
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