Patients suffering severe plaque psoriasis may be offered the use of ustekinumab if they do not respond to usual therapies, according to final published guidance.
NICE has allowed adults who cannot use standard systemic therapies to be treated with the drug for a maximum of 16 weeks.
Dr Carole Longson, Health Technology Evaluation Centre Director at NICE, said: ‘Plaque psoriasis can have a huge impact on an individual, with the condition causing significant discomfort and in severe cases it can be painful.
‘The characteristic raised red patches of skin covered with silvery scales are commonly seen on elbows, knees or scalp, but in severe cases can cover most of the body.
‘This new guidance recommending ustekinumab will offer hope to adults whose severe plaque psoriasis hasn’t been helped by systemic therapies including ciclosporin, ethotrexate and psoralen with long-wave ultraviolet radiation.’
Sufferers weighing more than 100 kg will need a higher dose than lighter patients, but NICE has recommended ustekinumab on the basis that the manufacturer costs will be the same. Any sensory, learning or physical disabilities exhibited by patients should be considered by health professionals when carrying out drug response assessments.