Prostate Cancer: Thousands of Men Benefit from a New NHS Approved Drug | News from the UK
Thousands of men are said to benefit from a new prostate cancer drug approved for the NHS.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) has recommended enzalutamide as an option for treating some types of the disease.
Prostate Cancer UK said the news is welcome for thousands of men, especially those who cannot receive chemotherapy.
The drug was used as a so-called “COVID-friendly” cancer drug during the pandemic, which patients can take at home instead of intravenous medication in the healthcare sector.
New draft guidelines from Nice are now intended to enable broader use.
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The instructions state that the drug, also known as Xtandi and manufactured by Astellas, can be used with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) as an option to treat hormone-sensitive metastatic prostate cancer in adults.
Angela Culhane, CEO of Prostate Cancer UK, said, “This is fantastic news for thousands of men with advanced prostate cancer, especially those who have additional diseases that make them unsuitable for chemotherapy.
“It finally guarantees them access to treatment that is as effective as chemotherapy and can give them back valuable time with their families.”
There are an estimated 8,500 men who have access to the drug, which blocks the effects of the hormone testosterone on prostate cancer cells.
Without testosterone, prostate cancer cells cannot grow, even if they have spread to other parts of the body.
Clinical studies have shown that treatment increases the time it takes for the disease to get worse and how long people live.
Meindest Boysen, Deputy General Manager and Director of the Center for Health Technology Evaluation in Nice, said: “Enzalutamide plus ADT offers another option for people with hormone-sensitive metastatic prostate cancer, especially people who cannot get docetaxel or who have decided against it because of it Side effects. “
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