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"Myeloma agent offers new hope"

Medical Post

Source: Medical Post

Published: 09 Aug 2022

Category: Pharmaceutical

Rating: (5 stars)

what they said (Hover the mouse cursor over underlined words for more info)

Despite encouraging phase III study results showing the cancer drug bortezomib offers relapsed multiple myeloma patients significantly better treatment outcomes than the current standard of care, Ontarians with this condition are unlikely to be celebrating.

Government funding for bortezomib (Velcade), which was approved in January by Health Canada, is currently available on a special access basis everywhere in the country but the one province that houses one-third of the nation's population. In British Columbia, the drug was recently added to the province's formulary.

In Ontario, frustration over bortezomib has even led to the unprecedented move of a freestanding clinic opening to provide the drug to those who can cover the weighty costs themselves.

Dr. Donna Reece, of the department of medical oncology and hematology at the Princess Margaret Hospital here, was one of the investigators of a recent New England Journal of Medicine study that found bortezomib offers superior survival, time to disease progression and response rates compared with dexamethasone, the commonly used second-line treatment for relapsed multiple myeloma.

The original article can be found at:

The original article can found in the Media Doctor archives.

how did it rate? (more information)

Criteria Rating
Total Score 8 of 8
Availability of Treatment Satisfactory (?)
Novelty of Treatment Satisfactory (?)
Disease Mongering Satisfactory (?)
Treatment Options Satisfactory (?)
Costs of Treatment Satisfactory (?)
Evidence Not Applicable
Quantification of Benefits of Treatment Satisfactory (?)
Harms of Treatment Satisfactory (?)
Sources of Information Satisfactory (?)
Relies on Press Release Not Applicable
Quantification of Harms of Treatment Not Applicable

what we said (Hover the mouse cursor over underlined words for more info)

This is a well-written article that describes the benefits and adverse events of bortezomib, a new drug therapy for patients with multiple myeloma who have failed standard therapy.
This article was fairly comprehensive in its comparison of a traditional drug and the novel drug treatment for relapsed multiple myeloma, touching on all the major areas except the cost of dexamethasone treatment, which is $27 per treatment cycle plus pharmacy fees.

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