The beta blocker thalasaremia is the most popular beta blocker in the market, with more than half of its sales coming from the US.
But as the drug has shown to be effective in reducing inflammation and reducing seizures in some patients, it is still an option that is less popular than its peers.
“There are other beta blockers out there and they are just better in every way, but thalases is a lot better and more widely available, and I think that’s going to be more important than the price tag,” said Dr Matthew Brown, chief executive of UK-based anti-viral drugs company, BetaNet.
“It’s going in the top three because it’s one of the most well-studied beta blockers on the market.”
Dr Brown has a personal stake in thalasemia, having battled the disease since his mid-20s and battled with severe fatigue, depression and anxiety for years.
“I used to be the only doctor in the UK who didn’t have a thalaser,” he said.
“As a doctor, you don’t really feel like you can go into work.
I was doing so much work, but when you’re going through all these symptoms, it’s really hard to go to work.”
In addition to the long-term effects, the disease can have severe psychological impacts, with some patients having to abandon their job.
“The thing about it is you’re so sick that you can’t work,” Dr Brown said.
The biggest advantage for patients is that thalasses has a low price tag, compared to other drugs on the block.
“They’re so much cheaper, so the prices are a lot lower,” he explained.
“In a way it makes it easier to see if you’re right for a drug, because it means you’re getting it at a lower price than the other options.”
One of the biggest drawbacks is that it requires that you have a blood test to get your blood level, which is a major hurdle for patients.
“If you’re having blood tests, you’re at a higher risk of developing complications with thalaxia,” Dr Frank said.
However, Dr Brown is optimistic.
“This is the first year where thalascopei has been shown to do the same thing as the others,” he told RTE.
“People are actually seeing a benefit.”
“People really are going to have to decide whether they want to get thalasa or not, and that’s the only thing we can do at the moment,” he added.
The new treatment has a small but promising trial set to begin in the next few weeks, with the aim of eventually extending the treatment to people who have already had thalastatic or thalasinoma surgery.
Dr Brown expects that by the end of the year, patients should be able to take thalasia drugs for the first time.
“At least for now, it works, it makes them feel better, it reduces their symptoms, so we are going very, very quickly towards getting this to patients who really need it,” he predicted.
“We’re in the early stages of testing, and hopefully it will be safe.”