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NICE recommends RA drug

The UK's National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has issued final guidance recommending Centocor Ortho Biotech's rheumatoid arthritis drug Simponi in specific, limited circumstances

The UK's National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued final guidance recommending Centocor Ortho Biotech's rheumatoid arthritis (RA) drug Simponi (golimumab) for use on the NHS in specific, limited circumstances.

The drug is recommended for adults with severe active RA used in combination with methotrexate in cases where 'conventional' disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) have been ineffective.

It is also recommended for similar patients who have tried other types of DMARDs, including a tumour necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitor, but these treatments have also been ineffective and the patient is unable to take rituximab therapy for medical reasons or because of a previous bad reaction.

Dr Carole Longson, Health Technology Evaluation Centre director at NICE said: "This final guidance sets out the circumstances where golimumab can now be offered by the NHS as a treatment option for people with rheumatoid arthritis for whom previous treatments have not worked.

"Rheumatoid arthritis treatments help to relieve pain, improve mobility and reduce the long-term damage often experienced by people with this condition."

22nd June 2011

From: Healthcare

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