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Nycomed welcomes the decision by the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) on Instanyl, the only fast-acting intranasal treatment licensed for breakthrough cancer pain.
The SMC decision means that cancer patients in Scotland will now have another option for the treatment of breakthrough cancer pain within NHS Scotland. Summarised and detailed advice from the SMC is published today on its website.
Breakthrough cancer pain is a severe or excruciating pain of sudden onset and short duration that bursts through the background “round the clock” pain medication making management difficult.
Breakthrough cancer pain, which affects up to 95% of patients with chronic cancer pain, is typically severe, sudden and brief, lasting an average of 30 minutes and striking on average 4 times a day. Breakthrough cancer pain can place significant physical, psychological and economic burdens on both patients and their carers. The unpredictability and severity of these attacks can have a significant impact on the quality of life of patients living with cancer.
Instanyl received an EU license in July 2009 for the treatment of breakthrough pain in adult patients already receiving maintenance opioid therapy for chronic cancer pain.