NICE Recommends Liraglutide for Diabetes Treatment
A once-daily injection for type 2 diabetes treatment, liraglutide (Victoza), is now being recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). An increase in obesity rates and poor diet has caused an increase in diabetes across the U.S. and U.K. sparking a demand for diabetes research and new diabetes treatment drug innovations.
Patients who are unable to control their diabetes with current available treatments could find relief in liraglutide.
Eligibility for the drug is limited to overweight diabetes patients only, with a body mass index (BMI) of 35kg/m. “Controlling hyperglycaemia and its indicators is not easy. The addition of liraglutide to our formulary will be welcome by patients and will go a long way to helping them achieve their glycaemic goals,” Dr George Kassianos, a member of the British Cardiovascular Society and a GP in Berkshire. He sees the approval as a “welcome” development for primary care physicians.
The recommendation focuses on using liraglutide as part of a triple therapy treatment plan. Dr Carole Longson, Health Technology Evaluation Centre Director at NICE states “We are pleased to recommend liraglutide, 1.2 mg daily, as a clinically and cost effective treatment option as part of triple therapy regimens for some patients under restrictions.”
Patients currently undergoing double treatments, using metformin and a sulfonylurea, or metformin and a thiazolidinedione, but are still having blood glucose problems should be given liraglutide while continuing their regular diabetes treatment.
“However we felt that there was not sufficient evidence to recommend it in dual therapy regimens for type-2 diabetes mellitus. The Committee concluded that there were disparities in the data provided by the manufacturer, particularly regarding the economic analyses of liraglutide in dual therapy regimens for this type of diabetes. The next step for the manufacturer is to consider the committee’s comments and respond to its concerns.”
According to the American Diabetes Association, type 2 diabetes symptoms can be difficult to detect. However, type 1 diabetes symptoms, such as frequent urination, unusual thirst, extreme hunger, unusual weight loss, extreme fatigue and irritability are also signs of type 2 diabetes. Other symptoms include frequent infections, blurred vision, cuts/bruises that are slow to heal tingling/numbness in the hands/feet, and recurring skin, gum, or bladder infections.
Diabetes treatments involve many different ways to control blood glucose levels. Insulin treatments, diet, oral medication, aspirin and other injectable medications all tackle the debilitating effects of diabetes. Victoza, or liraglutide, was released in January of this year. Other similar drugs and innovative research for diabetes treatment is released daily.
NICE is an independent organization in the U.K. that provides national guidance about maintaining good health and treating or preventing ill health. The organization is comprised of independent advisory groups “made up of health professionals, those working in the NHS, patients, their carers and the public.”
Source: National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence
Written by Amy Munday