FDA-approves First-ever Drug for Thyroid Eye Disease

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Image credits: FDA

U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the first-ever drug for treating thyroid eye disease. This new drug is named “Teprotumumab” and relieves itchy, inflamed and bulgy eyes in thyroid patients, irrespective of their age, gender or health status.

The study explaining the effects of Teprotumumab is accepted and soon it would be presented at ENDO 2020. ENDO 2020 is the annual meeting session of the Endocrine Society and all presentations/studies are published directly under the Journal of the Endocrine Society.

Thyroid eye disease is a rare medical problem but it is dreadful for people who are infected with it. This disease can affect their relations with their family members, loved ones, colleagues, friends, and even with the general public.

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There was no medicine to treat thyroid eye disease previously. Hence this new medicine was welcomed by the FDA and it has now got approval in January 2020 for being manufactured and sold for treating thyroid eye disease.

George J. Kahaly, from the Johannes Gutenberg University Medical Center, Germany is the lead author of this study. As to him, Teprotumumab is a wonder drug as it gives a new light of hope for all thyroid eye patients.

The study causes inflammation itching and outward bulging of the infected person’s eye which could cause a number of visionary problems. It further causes pain in eyes, double vision, blurry vision, sensitivity from light and difficulty in moving or closing eyes.

All these symptoms look simple and minor but in reality, they hinder routine activities, leaving the affected person’s life miserable. He can’t concentrate, read, watch tv, drive or work in general. Also, thyroid eye disease is much more common in women than in men.

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During studying the effects of Teprotumumab, the research team investigated 171 patients for 24 weeks. All of these patients were confirmed for having thyroid and thyroid eye disease. The study results showed that nearly 77.4% of experienced reduced eye bulging and associated symptoms as compared to placebo patients (14.9%). This research was to check the drug efficiency as per individual health, gender, age, and smoking status.

During this 24 weeks period, all patients were assigned to use teprotumumab or a placebo group, randomly. After the 24 week period was over, there were more people recovering who used teprotumumab with improved bulging on eyes in comparison with those under the placebo effect.

Upon this approval; Wiley Chamber, the deputy director of the Division of Transplant and Ophthalmology Products in the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (FDA) said in a statement that getting this approval is indeed a big step towards thyroid eye disease’s treatment. Right now, there are only a few options for treatment available and a less invasive, more effective and cost-friendly treatment is probably the best addition to these options.

 

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