Ankylose This! Living with Ankylosing Spondylitis

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The silver bullet

Bob J. writes,

I watch the Health Canada Notices of Compliance carefully, and noticed a new indication for Enbrel dated May 6. I couldn't find out what the new indication was for. Today I called Enliven services (I am on Enbrel even though it isn't approved) and they confirmed that it has now been approved for AS. I just started week seven and I've got to tell you that if there is a silver bullet for AS, Enbrel is it. [links added]

I've been trying to track down some record of the approval decision for Enbrel (etanercept) and can't find it, either in the Notice of Compliance or in Health Canada's Drug Product Database entry for Enbrel. I'm sure it's out there somewhere.

Etanercept is an anti-TNF-alpha biologic agent in the same class as infliximab (Remicade); see previous entry.

The Ottawa Health Research Institute has a "decision aid" (PDF) for people wondering whether they should take biologics for ankylosing spondylitis. Bob's experience with them isn't unique, but I suspect that this new class of drugs won't work for everyone -- nothing ever does.

Comments on this post

  • Is Enbrel approved for AS in Canada? I know of someone who was recently approved by Great West Life for coverage of Enbrel for AS. I personally have been trying to get coverage for Remicade, Great West says no. Is Enbrel/Remicade like Coke/Pepsi? Same thing, different company? I have been searching Health Canada, too - not very clear info.

    Posted by Blogger laura (6/11/2005 10:27 PM)  

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