Rare Daily Staff
GW Pharmaceuticals’ recently approved medicine Epidiolex is now available in the United States for the treatment of seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) or Dravet syndrome in patients two years of age or older.
Epidiolex is a pharmaceutical formulation of highly purified cannabidiol, a cannabinoid lacking the high associated with marijuana. It received marketing approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“Because these patients have historically not responded well to available seizure medications, there has been a dire need for new therapies that aim to reduce the frequency and impact of seizures,” said Justin Gover, CEO of GW Pharmaceuticals.
The company has introduced a comprehensive patient support program designed to help patients who have been prescribed Epidiolex gain access to therapy. The program offers patient/caregiver-focused education and resources to help lower out-of-pocket costs or provide product at no cost for eligible patients.
LGS is a severe, lifelong form of epilepsy that begins in childhood and is associated with a high mortality rate, and significant developmental delays. LGS patients suffer from multiple types of seizures, including drop seizures that can result in falls and other injuries. Dravet syndrome is a rare, catastrophic, lifelong form of epilepsy that begins in the first year of life with frequent and/or prolonged seizures.
Both the LGS Foundation and the Dravet Syndrome Foundation welcome the availability of a new treatment option for patients suffering from these debilitating conditions.
“Epidiolex is a much-needed new treatment option for patients with LGS,” said Christina SanInocencio, executive director of the Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome Foundation. “Despite the use of multiple epilepsy treatments, the majority of LGS patients continue to have life-long, debilitating seizures and our community welcomes the availability of a new, first-in-class treatment option.”
Epidiolex is the first medication to be approved by the FDA for patients with Dravet syndrome. “Our community has long desired a medication specifically approved for the treatment of seizures associated with Dravet syndrome,” said Mary Anne Meskis, executive director of the Dravet Syndrome Foundation.
November 2, 2018
Photo: Justin Gover, CEO of GW Pharmaceuticals