Treatment for urticaria in Scotland

The Scottish Medicines Consortium has recommended the use of omalizumab for the treatment of patients with chronic spontaneous urticaria

The consortium recommends omalizumab as an add-on therapy for chronic spontaneous urticaria in adults and adolescents aged over 12 years whose condition has shown an inadequate response to combination therapy with H1 antihistamines, leukotriene receptor antagonists and H2 antihistamines.
During three placebo-controlled trials (ASTERIA I, ASTERIA II and GLACIAL) involving 1,000 patients not responding to H1 antihistamine treatment, omalizumab 300mg was shown to significantly improve itch and hives. Quality of life was also significantly improved for patients treated with omalizumab across the phase III study programme.
Professor David Burden, consultant dermatologist at the Western Infirmary, Glasgow, said: 'Chronic spontaneous urticaria can be a very distressing condition, which has a huge impact on patients' physical and psychological wellbeing. For many years, treatment options for these patients have been severely limited. Today's recommendation from the Scottish Medicines Consortium is very welcome and provides people living with chronic spontaneous urticaria and their healthcare professionals an important new treatment option. This will make a huge difference to the lives of many patients.'
Scottish Medicines Consortium. omalizumab 150mg solution for injection (Xolair) SMC No (1017/14). December 2014

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