National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)
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NICE recommends pemetrexed for the treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has today (23 September) published final guidance on the use of pemetrexed for the treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The guidance recommends pemetrexed in combination with cisplatin as an option for the first-line treatment of patients with NSCLC that has spread to the surrounding tissues or other parts of the body and if it has been confirmed as being a type of tumour known as an adenocarcinoma or large-cell carcinoma.

People who are currently being treated with pemetrexed for NSCLC but who do not meet this criteria should have the option to continue their therapy until they and their clinicians consider it appropriate to stop.

Dr Carole Longson, Health Technology Evaluation Centre Director said: “Lung cancer is one of the most common cancers in the UK, with around 38,000 people diagnosed every year. The independent Appraisal Committee carefully considered testimonies from clinical specialists and patients as well as available evidence on the clinical effectiveness of pemetrexed. They concluded that pemetrexed could potentially be an important treatment for this group of patients and represented a cost effective use of NHS resources. This guidance means that those patients with adenocarcinoma or large-cell carcinoma will have a further treatment option.”