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The cost regulator for the U.K.'s publicly-funded National Health Service has reversed its earlier stance on U.S.-based Allergan Inc.'s (AGN) wrinkle-fighting drug Botox and now recommends its use for some patients suffering from migraine headaches.
The independent National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence Friday said in final draft guidance that its advisory committee now recommends use of the injected medicine, known chemically as botulinum toxin type A, for some adult patients with chronic migraine, after NICE received more information on the product from the company. The body had previously said it was not convinced of the value of funding the therapy on the NHS.
NICE director Carole Longson said in a statement; "we are pleased that the committee has been able to recommend Botox as a preventative therapy for those adults whose headaches have not improved despite trying at least three other medications and whose headaches are not caused by medication overuse."
A chronic migraine is defined as headaches on at least 15 days per month of which at least 8 days are with migraine. Chronic migraines are believed to affect 1.6% of adults in the U.K.
-By Sten Stovall, Dow Jones Newswires; +44 207 842 9292; firstname.lastname@example.org