LONDON (Reuters) - British pharmaceutical firm BTG said on Monday its EKOS combination therapy device for pulmonary embolism (PE) was effective using smaller drug dosages and shorter treatment periods than the current standard.
EKOS, which the company says it the only device cleared to treat pulmonary embolism, uses ultrasonic waves and clot-dissolving thrombolytic drugs delivered by a catheter to restore healthy heart function and blood flow.
BTG’s shares were up 4 percent at 662 pence at 1137 GMT.
The company’s Optalyse trial found that patients achieved a significant reduction in the main indicator of right heart strain from pulmonary embolism in shorter treatment periods of two, four and six hours rather than the standard 12 or 24 hours.
Bleeding rates and the amount of standard clot dissolving medication used in the treatment was also lower, it said.
“Now patients can be treated in half the time and half the dose or less, providing greater flexibility to clinicians, improved safety to patients, and potential cost savings to hospitals,” said EKOS General Manager Matt Stupfel.
Pulmonary embolism occurs when a piece of a blood clot breaks off from a clot in the legs and travels through the vasculature to the pulmonary arteries, where it restricts flow to the lungs, ultimately leading to heart failure.
The condition can be immediately fatal, but if diagnosed and treated, mortality can be reduced from about 30 percent to less than 10 percent, BTG said.
Reporting by Paul Sandle, editing by Louise Heavens