Selpercatinib approved to treat rare types of thyroid cancer on the NHS

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended the drug selpercatinib for treating some patients in England with advanced thyroid cancer.

Selpercatinib is available through the Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF) as an option for treating some thyroid cancer patients who may otherwise only be offered palliative care.

These groups of patients are:

  • Adults with advanced RET fusion-positive thyroid cancer who need systemic therapy after sorafenib or lenvatinib
  • People aged 12 years and above with advanced RET-mutant medullary thyroid cancer requiring systemic therapy after cabozantinib or vandetanib

This decision follows the Scottish Medicines Consortium’s (SMC) announcement on 13 September 2021 to accept selpercatinib for use within NHS Scotland for the same patient groups on an interim basis subject to ongoing evaluation and future reassessment.

Julia Priestley, BTF Chief Executive Officer (Development), said: ‘We welcome the development of any new drug that improves the treatment of patients with advanced thyroid cancer. There are limited options for advanced thyroid cancer and we welcome the NICE decision to include selpercatinib on the CDF.

‘As with many cancers, it is important that the symptoms of thyroid cancer are recognised early and that there are more treatment options available. Symptoms can include a lump in the neck, a hoarse voice that lasts for more than three weeks, a sore throat or difficulty swallowing that does not get better.’

NICE information about selpercatinib 

BTF thyroid cancer resources