The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has accepted Sanofi Genzyme’s Jevtana (cabazitaxel) for routine use in NHS Scotland to treat metastatic hormone-refractory prostate cancer (mHRPC).

Jevtana (cabazitaxel) is a chemotherapy option available on the NHS for advanced prostate cancer that is not responsive to hormone therapies, following initial chemotherapy (docetaxel).

The decision reduces potential disparities in care across the UK for this vulnerable group of patients.

Sanofi Genzyme UK & Ireland Oncology and Immunology franchise director Dr Jasmin Hussein said: “Through ongoing collaboration our treatment can now be accessed by all doctors who treat patients with metastatic hormone-refractory prostate cancer in the country.

“The approval of Jevtana by the SMC is important, as it represents a new treatment choice where limited options have existed.”

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Nearly one in two men in Scotland will be affected by some form of prostate disease at some stage of their lives and about one in 11 men are likely to develop prostate cancer.

Most prostate cancers become resistant to hormone therapy and continue to grow even after giving treatment.

"The approval of Jevtana by the SMC is important, as it represents a new treatment choice where limited options have existed."

Prostate cancer patients charity Tackle chairman Roger Wotton said: “This is positive news for men in Scotland who now have the same access as other men in the UK to treatment that increases their chance to live longer.

“The availability of Jevtana means men in Scotland now have an alternative effective treatment option. Likewise, physicians now have another medicine in their arsenal to treat patients.”

Initially, the SMC rejected Sanofi Genzyme’s updated application in June this year.

Patients treated with the plant-based chemotherapy Jevtana can experience side effects such as anaemia, infections / sepsis, low blood counts and diarrhoea.

Image: Micrograph of prostatic adenocarcinoma, the most common form of prostate cancer. Photo: courtesy of Nephron.