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NICE recommends Eylea as first-line treatment for sight threatening condition

Published on 24/08/16 at 08:29am

Bayer has announced that the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended Eylea (aflibercept) as a cost-effective first-line treatment option for adults with visual impairment due to macular oedema secondary to branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO).

BRVO is caused by a blood clot in one of the branches of the main vein in the retina, which causes blood and fluid leaking beneath the macular oedema. If untreated, this can significantly impact a person’s vision, often resulting in sight loss.

NICE’s final appraisal determination contrasts with their provisional decision, which refused to recommend Eylea as a first-line treatment. However, NICE has changed its mind, judging the treatment to be more clinically effective than existing first-line treatment laser photocoagulation.

It is estimated that around 13,000 patients will have access to the treatment, which has shown consistent efficacy versus conventional first line treatments.

Eylea is already licensed in the UK for the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration, visual impairment due to macular oedema secondary to central retinal vein occlusion.

Professor Sobha Sivaprasad, consultant ophthalmologist at Moorfields Eye Hospital, says: “This is great news for the clinical community as it means we will be able to offer patients with BRVO the same opportunity to achieve improvements in vision, as those with other retinal conditions. This recommendation will also mean that treatment decisions could be simplified, with fewer interventions and NHS resources required to ensure patients are achieving the best possible visual outcomes.”

Dr Alexander Moscho, CEO at Bayer UK/Ireland, says: “We are delighted that NICE has recognised the value of Eylea and the benefits that it can bring to patients and the clinical community. At Bayer we are committed to ensuring all eligible patients have access to Eylea in line with the market authorisation so that it is great news for patients with BRVO who will have access to this effective treatment as soon as possible in the treatment pathway.”

Sean Murray

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