The Medicine Company’s Angiox (bivalirudin) has been recommended by NICE for the treatment of a type of heart attack called ST-segment-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI).
NICE’s independent Appraisal Committee concluded that the treatment is more effective and less costly than other options to treat the condition.
Dr Carole Longson, NICE Health Technology Evaluation Centre Director, says the NHS has been provided with “another important tool” to treat people more effectively.
Approximately 180,000 people in the UK are admitted to hospital after suffering a heart attack and nearly 30,000 people in England and Wales will die as a result.
STEMI is caused by the narrowing and blockage of the coronary artery that delivers blood to the heart. Current treatments aim to re-open the blocked artery and include primary PCI, a surgical procedure where either fine wires, balloons or stents are inserted to disrupt the blood clot.
Angiox is a type of anticoagulant that is given intravenously at the time of the PCI, together with aspirin and clopidogrel, to prevent blood from clotting during the procedure.
“The independent committee that advises NICE considered that, on the basis of the available evidence, bivalirudin, in combination with clopidogrel and aspirin, is both more effective and less expensive than treatment with a glycoprotein inhibitor plus heparin,” said Dr Longson.
“It is also associated with a lower incidence of major bleeding events compared with heparin and glycoprotein inhibitors.”