1 What is Allocord?

Brand: Allocord, Ducord, Hemocord

Generic: Hematopoietic progenitor cells, cord blood

Allocord is used for blood cell transplants in patients with disorders that affect the production of blood. This medication is derived from human blood that is collected from the umbilical cord and placenta. 

The hematopoietic progenitor cells go to the bone marrow and become red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets. These cells enter the blood stream and help to restore low blood counts in patients.

This medication is to be given only by or under the immediate supervision of your doctor.

This product is available in the following forms:

  • Suspension

2 What to Know Before Using

As with all medicines, the risks of using Allocord must be compared to how much this medication will help you. This is a decision that you and your doctor will make together.

For this medication, there are many things that need to be considered:

  • AllergiesInform your doctor if you have ever had an allergic reaction to Doxorubicin or to any other medications. It is also important to inform your doctor of any non-medicine allergies such as foods, dyes, preservatives or animals. 
  • Pediatric: Up-to-date pediatric appropriate studies have not indicated any problems that would limit the use of this medication.
  • Geriatric: No appropriate studies have been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of this medication in elderly patients, but no geriatric-specific problems have been documented. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney or heart problems, which may require caution.
  • Pregnancy: This medication is listed as Pregnancy Category C. This means that animal studies have shown an adverse effect and no studies have been performed on pregnant women or there are no adequate studies on pregnant animals and pregnant women.
  • Breastfeeding: There are no up-to-date studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication while breastfeeding. Weigh the potential risks with the benefits before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
  • Drug Interactions: Certain medications should not be used together. However, in certain cases, two medications may be used together, even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change your dose or take other precautions.When taking this medication, it is important that you inform your doctor if you are taking any prescription or over the counter medications.
  • Other Interactions: Certain medications should not be used while eating, or while eating certain foods in case of negative interactions. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medications may also cause negative interactions. Talk with your doctor about the use of your medication with food, alcohol or tobacco.
  • Other Medical Problems: Pre-existing medical problems may affect the use of this medication. Be sure to tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially: 
    • Allergy to antibiotics (i.e. amoxicillin, ciprofloxacin, penicillin, Augmentin®, Bactrim®, Septra®) - Use with caution. May cause side effects to become worse.
    • Allergy to dextran 40 
    • Allergy to dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) 
    • Allergy to hydroxyethylstarch 
    • Allergy to plasma proteins - Should not be used in patients with these conditions.

3 Proper Usage

A doctor or other trained medical professional will give Allocord to you in a hospital. It is given through a needle placed in one of your veins (intravenously).

You may also receive medications such as antihistamines or corticosteroids to help prevent adverse reactions to the injection.

4 Precautions to Take

It is very important that your doctor checks in with you often while you are receiving Allocord to make sure that it is working properly. Blood and urine tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.

This medication may cause a serious type of allergic reaction called anaphylaxis, which is life-threatening and requires immediate emergency medical help. 

Inform your doctor immediately if you have a skin rash, hives or itching, sweating, swelling of the face, tongue and throat, difficulty breathing or chest pain after receiving this medication.

This medication may cause infusion reactions. This can occur while receiving this medication or within the first few hours after the infusion has ended. 

Inform your doctor immediately if you have a headache, dizziness, muscle aches, fever or chills or a skin reaction such as a rash or itching.

Inform your doctor immediately if you have a fever, rash, diarrhea, unexplained weight gain or yellow eyes or skin (jaundice). These may be symptoms of a serious condition called graft-versus-host disease or engraftment syndrome.

Inform your doctor immediately if you have swollen glands, a fever, diarrhea, loss of appetite, stomach pain or weight loss after receiving this medication. 

These may be symptoms of a rare, but serious, condition called post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder (PTLD). It can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention.

This medication is made from donated human blood. Some human blood products have transmitted viruses to people who have received them, although the risk is very low. 

Human donors and donated blood are both tested for viruses to keep the transmission risk low. Ask your doctor about this risk if you are concerned.

5 Potential Side Effects

Allocord may produce unwanted affects along with the intended effects. Although not all of these side-effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following side-effects:

More Common

Less Common

  • Confusion
  • Dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • Raised red swellings on the skin, lips, tongue, or in the throat
  • Skin rash or itching over the entire body
  • Sweating
  • Weakness

Some patients may experience other side effects that are not listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any other side effects.

Ask your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.