A clinical study found that people who took the drug along with hormone therapy had a more than 30% better chance of their cancer not coming back
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About 4,000 women with breast cancer could benefit from a new twice-daily pill approved by the NHS.
The charity Breast Cancer Now has welcomed the decision by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) to offer women the drug ‘Abemaciclib’, which can drastically reduce the chances of the disease coming back after a tumor has been removed.
The drug, manufactured by Eli Lilly, is for patients with hormone receptor-positive, HER2-negative, node-positive, early-stage breast cancer at high risk of recurrence who have undergone surgery.
Results from a clinical trial showed that people who received abemaciclib and hormone therapy had a more than 30% better chance of their cancer not coming back after surgery compared to hormone therapy alone.
Baroness Delyth Morgan, Chief Executive of Breast Cancer Now, said: “It is fantastic that thousands of women with this type of primary breast cancer now have an additional treatment option available in the NHS to further reduce the risk of the disease coming back.
Georgia Tilley Georgia.Tilley@breastcancercare.org.uk)
“The fear of breast cancer returning or spreading to other parts of the body and becoming incurable can be a source of significant anxiety for so many women and their loved ones.
“Therefore, effective new treatments such as abemaciclib, which may offer more women the opportunity to further reduce the risk of disease recurrence, are extremely welcome and an important step forward in terms of drug options available for this patient population.”
Helen Knight, interim director for drug evaluation in Nice, said the drug’s approval was “fantastic news”.
“The fact that we were able to produce draft recommendations so quickly is a testament to the success of our quest to help patients access clinical and affordable treatments as early as possible,” said Ms. Knight.
She said there are currently no targeted treatments for people with this particular type of breast cancer.
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Ms. Knight added, “Abemaciclib with hormone therapy represents a significant improvement in treatment because the ability to target treatment earlier after surgery increases the chances of recovering from the disease and reduces the likelihood of developing an incurable advanced disease.”
Around 50,000 people are diagnosed with breast cancer in England each year. HER2-negative breast cancer is the most common type, accounting for about 70% of all breast cancers. It is estimated that early breast cancer recurs after initial treatment in about 30% of people.
Professor Peter Johnson, Cancer Director at NHS England said: “Thanks in part to this latest agreement from NHS England, NHS patients will have access to another new targeted medicine for a common and aggressive form of breast cancer.
“Abemaciclib, when used in conjunction with hormone therapy, offers a new, dual-targeted treatment option that will help increase the chances of definitively defeating the cancer and reinforce the NHS’ commitment to providing improved cancer care as part of our long-term plan fulfill .”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/thousands-women-breast-cancer-could-27257868 Thousands of women with breast cancer could benefit from the new NHS-approved pill