Erlotinib for the Treatment of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Technology Appraisal

May 2017

Cancer

Country of origin: UK

Erlotinib is recommended as an alternative to docetaxel for patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who have already tried one chemotherapy regimen but it has not worked. Erlotinib should be used only when the manufacturer provides the drug at the same overall treatment cost as docetaxel. This cost includes the cost of giving the drug, treatments for any side effects and the cost of monitoring patients to check that treatment is working.

If the overall treatment cost is equal, specialists should discuss with patients the potential benefits and risks of erlotinib and docetaxel before deciding which treatment to use.

Erlotinib is not recommended for people with locally advanced or metastatic NSCLC who cannot take docetaxel and have already tried one chemotherapy regimen but it has not worked.

Erlotinib is not recommended for people who have already tried two chemotherapy regimens, including docetaxel, but they haven't worked.

Healthcare professionals should not stop prescribing erlotinib for people who were already taking it when the guidance was issued. These patients should be able to carry on taking erlotinib until they and their specialist decide that it is the right time to stop treatment.

'Lung cancer (non-small-cell) - erlotinib: guidance ' is available online.

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