Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research has welcomed the decision by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to approve two key drugs for the treatment of myeloma. Thalidomide has been recommended for newly diagnosed myeloma patients who cannot tolerate high-dose chemo and a bone marrow transplant – often because of age or other medical problems. Bortezomib (Velcade™) is recommended for those patients for whom thalidomide would not be appropriate.
Dr David Grant, Scientific Director at Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, said: “This is good news for myeloma patients because thalidomide and bortezomib have been shown to be the most effective options for newly diagnosed myeloma patients if they are not recommended for a transplant. This ruling means that such patients should have no problem getting access to whichever of these drugs is considered best by their doctor.”