This sounds like a very promising development for Multiple Sclerosis sufferers. The drug which was developed by Cambridge University Research Team has been approved for use by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). offers the potential of some recovery! This is great news!
The drug Lemtrada can reduce the effects of the disease and can, in certain cases, enable some recovery.
The decision to allow its use has been welcomed by the MS Society.
The society described the drug as a "major step forward in the treatment of people with multiple sclerosis".
Nick Rijke, of the MS Society, said: "This drug has taken decades to develop and while it's not without risk, it's proven to be a highly effective medicine for people with relapsing remitting MS. We look forward to seeing it made available to those who could benefit."
"The decision from NICE now provides an opportunity for neurologists to offer a highly effective therapy for patients with multiple sclerosis early in the course of their illness."
Roughly one third of patients with multiple sclerosis develop another autoimmune disease, mainly targeting the thyroid gland. The research team is investigating how to identify people who are susceptible to this complication and testing whether the side-effect can be prevented using an additional drug that boosts repopulation of the immune system.
Lemtrada is not approved for use in the USA. I have mixed feelings on this, as the long-term effects of the biologic drugs are not known, so evaluating risk VS benefit is very difficult for both patients and doctors. These treatments are unbelievably expensive, so insurance companies and government do not want to pay for them and ordinary people cannot afford them. www.drugs.com/history/lemtrada.html
I am taking a different but same class of drug for the disease which caused my SCI, and I delayed for several years starting the treatment because of the intense risks, complicated by my history of cancers and allergies to many antibiotics. Finally when my disease had progressed further, I decided to try this course. So far I have done pretty well, but not without dangers from serious infections and cost factor will probably determine whether I get to continue.