Advanced Parkinson’s disease: NICE backs treatment

27 October, 2023: The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended a treatment for advanced Parkinson’s disease that could benefit approximately 900 patients in England. This was the first technology appraisal from NICE to look at a treatment for Parkinson’s disease.

Final draft guidance suggests that foslevodopa–foscarbidopa (Produodopa, AbbVie) should be an option for treating advanced levodopa-responsive Parkinson’s disease in adults whose symptoms include severe motor fluctuations and hyperkinesia or dyskinesia.

Treatment will be an option when available medicines are not working well enough, and only if patients cannot have apomorphine or deep brain stimulation, or these treatments no longer control symptoms.

The treatment is administered subcutaneously via an infusion pump.

NICE noted that there is some uncertainty in the treatment effects, which could lead to the benefits of foslevodopa–foscarbidopa being overestimated. It also considered that the cost-effectiveness estimates for foslevodopa–foscarbidopa were uncertain. 

However, NICE acknowledged the high level of the unmet need – and the many potential benefits of the treatment – and recommended it.

NICE say that patients already receiving the treatment can continue without any change to the funding arrangements in place before publication of the guidance until they and their NHS clinician considered it appropriate to stop.

Final guidance is expected on 29 November, 2023. [UPDATE: See Overview | Foslevodopa–foscarbidopa for treating advanced Parkinson’s with motor symptoms | Guidance | NICE]

Foslevodopa–foscarbidopa represents an important new treatment for people with advanced Parkinson’s, providing an easy-to-use option that can help them manage their symptoms more reliably and effectively.

Helen Knight, Director of Medicines Evaluation at NICE