NICE rejects Lucentis for diabetic macular edema
In draft guidance issued last month, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) in Britain has not recommended use of Lucentis for treating diabetic macular edema (DME). Commenting on the draft recommendations, Sir Andrew Dillon, Chief Executive at NICE said: "Although ranibizumab has been shown to be an effective treatment for DME... the Appraisal Committee was unable to recommend the drug for this condition because the economic analysis provided by the manufacturer did not reflect clinical practice in a number of respects." Lucentis costs 742 British Pounds per injection. Treatment is given monthly and continued until a patient achieves maximum vision. Treatment may then be resumed when monitoring indicates a loss of visual acuity. The Committee concluded that a more realistic analysis combining all of its preferred assumptions would be certain to produce cost-utility estimates that substantially exceeded the range it could consider to represent an effective use of NHS resources.