Late-Stage Melanoma Sufferers Have More Treatment Options Thanks To Drug Approval

The Food and Drug Administration is bringing in reinforcements for those who suffer inoperable forms of melanoma. Zelboraf, which was recently approved by the government, joins Yervoy — approved in March — as new drugs that doctors believe will help patients live longer after treatment.

According to a UPI story, the director of the Office of Oncology Drug Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research says it’s been a breakthrough year for melanoma treatment:

“This has been an important year for patients with late-stage melanoma. Zelboraf is the second new cancer drug approved that demonstrates an improvement in overall survival.”

The FDA green-lighted Zelboraf in its priority review program, a sped-up six-month review process used to review drugs that potentially make major treatment advances.

Breakthrough melanoma drug approved [UPI]

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  1. dangerp says:

    Um… thanks for the pharmaceutical press release?

    Maybe I’ll get disemvoweled for this one, but this article seems very out of place on consumerist.

    • ash says:

      I agree. I don’t see how this is relevant to Consumerist readers.

    • SkokieGuy says:

      I concur, as posted no consumer angle.

      However, a fast google search reveals this tidbit published in the WSJ that does put a consumer spin on this new: “The treatment, to be sold under the brand name Zelboraf, will be taken for about six months and will cost about $56,400, according to Roche.”

    • Gramin says:

      Agreed. Doesn’t quite go along with their “Shoppers bite back” tagline…

      And, it’s also missing a question. I suggest: What’s your preferred drug for treatment of melanoma?

      Or maybe: What’s the longest you’ve had to wait to get your drug FDA approved?

      Or: How long did you live after being diagnosed with melanoma?

  2. Eyeheartpie says:

    How did you handle late stage melanoma?

    • SamiJ says:

      There really is no good treatment for melanoma or late stage melanoma. You get it and then you die, usually within 5 years (even with treatment). These new treatments are the first to be approved in over 30 years.

  3. magnetic says:

    As a person who has the privilege of using a lot of rx medications, I find myself thinking more and more that pharma is really overreaching with their new developments. To use this new drug, I have to also use another drug that doesn’t work? Why not just put them together to begin with?

  4. rushevents says:

    This is all well and good until the tort lawyers get hold of it.

  5. bethshanin says:

    Cue late night TV ad from attorney for class action suit in 3… 2…

  6. smartmuffin says:

    I like how this article presents the case as if the FDA is somehow responsible for these drugs existing. No mention of the private company who developed them, huh? Amazing coincidence I’m sure.

  7. Mark702 says:

    The FDA is total garbage. They’ll let neurotoxins like MSG and tons of other terrible stuff through, but completely ignore cannabis, which is a very effective treatment for melanoma patients.

    • dangerp says:

      Can you cite your source? I tried looking it up, but all I could find was a bunch of forum posts on how someone “heard” that it cures cancer/melanoma. No reputable sources or studies that I can find so far…

      I did find several studies linking cannabis to lung cancer… Irony?

    • nakago71 says:

      There’s a difference between palliative care and cure, one that I didn’t really see in your post. I’m not opposed to cannabis, just to the marketing of it as a “treatment” (which many people read as cure), when it’s really a measure to make the end less unpleasant.

  8. FLConsumer says:

    Late-Stage Melanoma Sufferers Have More EXPENSIVE Treatment Options Thanks To Drug Approval

    There. I fixed it.

  9. nakago71 says:

    Not to rain on everyone’s parade, but most of the data appears to be from studies funded by the company who stands to benefit. Moreover, longitudinal studies thus far cap at 7 months. So, yes, I second many of the comments above – why is this a consumerist issue?