New European Survey of ITP: Insight into Treatment Experience for Patients with Rare Blood Disorder

By Amgen, PRNE
Thursday, June 9, 2011

ZUG, Switzerland, June 10, 2011 -

Amgen announced today the results of a new European survey of people
suffering from a rare blood disorder called immune thrombocytopenia (ITP)
shows that one in four feels the impact of the condition on their daily lives
is severe, causing them anxiety and concern. ITP is a rare, serious and often
chronic immune disorder characterised by low platelet counts in the blood.

The survey also shows that two-thirds of people in the six countries
surveyed would like to have more healthcare professional advice and expert
information than they are currently receiving, to help them better manage
their condition.

Adult chronic ITP affects an estimated 2.0 per 100,000 patients in the
European Union (EU), (1,2) and is a rare and serious autoimmune disorder
characterised by low platelet counts in the blood (thrombocytopenia), which
can lead to severe bleeding events. ITP occurs when immune system cells
(specialised lymphocytes) produce antibodies that cause the destruction of
platelets in the spleen and other organs. The specific cause of ITP is
unknown and in most adults it is a chronic condition.

    Notes to Editors

    About the ITP Patient Experience Survey(3)

    - The survey was conducted by Kantar Health in 158 ITP patients in six
      European countries: UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the
    - The data was collected via a semi-structured questionnaire of 15
      minutes duration with a mixture of telephone and face-to-face
      interviews and online responses, depending on the country.
    - Nearly three quarters of the patients were female and their mean age
      was 47 years old.
    - Around 70 percent of respondents had been diagnosed around four or more
      years ago, with the remainder diagnosed in the last three years.
    - The survey was sponsored by Amgen (Europe) GmbH.

    Patient Treatment Experience Findings(3)

    - Sixty percent of patients surveyed were being prescribed or had been
      prescribed steroids.
    - Forty percent of patients had received at least three or more different
      therapies over time, suggesting that patients are not being managed on
      one therapy alone.
    - Nearly 80 percent of patients felt that their treatment could be
      improved by at least one factor; citing efficacy, fewer side effects
      and less frequent administration as the main areas.
    - Patients believed that one of the most important factors about a
      treatment is if it has a proven safety record and is effective at
      maintaining target platelet count over time.

    Access to ITP Information Findings(3)

    - Most were satisfied with the support they had received from physicians,
      stating that their diagnosis was quick, often within three months,
      that they received enough information about their condition and felt
      they were given strong emotional support.
    - When patients asked their physicians about treatment options, older
      therapies such as steroids and splenectomy were most commonly
      discussed. When patients actively sought more information about ITP
      from other sources, they were most keen to learn about treatment
      options and specifically newer therapies.
    - In terms of where patients found their information, more than half came
      from the internet, suggesting that ITP patients are keen to search
      online and there are opportunities to support them further through
      this medium. launched in 2010 under the guidance of expert
clinicians and sponsored by Amgen, is an online source that provides patients
and healthcare professionals with evidence-based and balanced information
about their condition. Amgen also collaborates with the European Society of
Haematology, and ITP specialists who form the Village Council,
overseeing the content of the site and providing their expertise. During
2011, Amgen will translate into 17 European languages, serving
20 countries.

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(1) McMillan R. Therapy for Adults with Refractory Chronic Immune
Thrombocytopenic Purpura. Ann Intern Med 1997;126:307-314

(2) Fogarty PF et al. Curr Opin Hematol 2007;14:515-519

(3) Data on file, Amgen (Europe) GmbH, Zug, Switzerland

E.U. media, Carrie Deverell, +41 41 3690 308, or U.S. media, Christine Regan, +1-805-447-5476, both of Amgen

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