A new weekly injection treatment has been approved for the NHS as a replacement for carrying out injections twice daily for people with type 2 diabetes. The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has provisionally approved the jab, which costs GBP19 a week, for use on the NHS.
With an estimated 2.5 million people suffering from type 2 diabetes in the UK, and around 850,000 undiagnosed, the decision means that Bydureon can be prescribed to patients, which could mean an end to people having to inject exenatide two times every day.
Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) will be able to begin prescribing the weekly Bydureon straight away, with a wider availability being delayed until once final guidance has been issued, expected to be in February 2012.
Cathy Moulto, clinical adviser at the charity Diabetes UK, commented “For people currently using exenatide, a twice-daily injectio, the possibility of being able to administer this treatment once a week could hugely improve their quality of life.”
Bydureo, which induces the pancreas to produce more insulin, is released a lot more slowly into the body than exenatide, meaning less injections are necessary. The drug recreates a hormone existing in the Gila Monster lizard, limiting the amount of sugar in the blood.

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