Wonder drug injection for severe asthma approved on NHS

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New “wonder drug” injection for uncontrolled asthma has been approved for use on the NHS.

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The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) recommends dupilumab for some patients whose asthma does not respond to conventional treatments.

The criteria for access to the drug are quite strict and include only patients who have severe asthma with type 2 inflammation (a defined pattern of immune response), who meet an inflammation threshold, who have had at least four severe asthma attacks in the past year. Have had asthma attacks and are ineligible for other biologic treatments.

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The Asthma UK and British Lung Foundation Partnership welcomed the news, saying it would change the lives of some patients.

According to the charity, 200,000 people in the UK often struggle with regular attacks of asthma and emergency visits to the hospital.

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In clinical trials, dupilumab has been shown to reduce the frequency of asthma attacks and the use of emergency steroid tablets by about half when combined with inhalers.

/ PA collection

However, the charity said that the current guidelines Good Referring people with severe asthma is “not clear,” meaning those most at risk are not being referred for treatment.

Dr Samantha Walker, Director of Research and Innovation at Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation, said: “Today’s news could be a real game-changer for thousands of people living with severe asthma. England Wales And Northern Ireland Those who live in constant fear of a life-threatening asthma attack at any time.

“Severe asthma can have a huge impact on people’s lives.

People They are caught in a never-ending cycle of hospital visits that have a severe and debilitating impact on their home, work and social life.

“While NICE’s decision to recommend dupilumab is cause for celebration, the sad fact is that four out of five people with suspected severe asthma are not being referred to specialists for treatments that could change their lives, And can even save.

“Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation are calling on NICE to develop new, clearer guidelines so that health care professionals can be confident about when to refer potentially severe asthma patients to the specialist care they need. desperately needed.

“If you are experiencing severe asthma symptoms, Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation have developed a new online tool that will help you get on top of undiagnosed symptoms, find out where you need extra help from your doctor. or whether or not there is a need to ask for a referral, and/or seek specialist assistance.

“For more information, see: asthma.org.uk/severeasthma.”

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