NICE Give Approval for Sankyo’s Blood Thinner Lixiana

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has given final recommendation for Sankyo’s blood thinner Lixiana (edoxaban) to be used for the treatment and prevention of recurrent deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism in adults.

Clinical trials showed that the drug works just as well veteran anticoagulant warfarin but has a better safety profile, which will significantly reduce the risk of major bleeds. The drug itself is a once-daily selective factor Xa-inhibitor that belongs to the Non-VKA Oral Anti-Coagulants class.

Daily treatment with Lixiana currently costs £2.10 per patient (excluding locally negotiated discounts), thereby the NICE concluded that its steady cost effectiveness ratio is likely to fall in line with other oral anticoagulants.

VTE is associated with considerable clinical burden and is often fatal. As Sankyo notes, the number of casualties in Europe annually due to VTE is double compared to the number of deaths from breast cancer, prostate cancer, AIDS and traffic accidents combined.

High rate of recurrence

There is a high rate of recurrence of VTE within the first 3 months after a first event, however this can be significantly reduced with anticoagulant treatment with the use of blood thinners, such as edoxaban.

“We need more tools to protect patients from a second incident and edoxaban will be of great use to doctors to help tailor treatments to specific patients,” said Alexander Cohen, Consultant Vascular Physician from Guys and St Thomas Hospitals, Kings College London, who has researched the drug for VTE.

NICE has also recommended Lixiana in draft guidelines for the prevention of stroke and systemic embolism in adult patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation.


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