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Approximately One-Third of MS Patients Experiencing Relapses Do Not Adequately Respond to Traditional Corticosteroid Therapy, According to New Data Presented at the 5th Joint Congress of the European and Americas Committees for Treatment and Researc
Date:10/21/2011

AMSTERDAM, Oct. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- On October 21 at the 5th Joint Congress of the European and Americas Committees for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS/ACTRIMS), results were presented from a survey conducted by NARCOMS which found that about one-third of patients experiencing MS relapses do not adequately respond to corticosteroid treatment.  The survey included over 2,000 patients with MS who had experienced relapses and were treated with either intravenous (IV) or oral corticosteroids.  Corticosteroids are generally considered to be first-line therapy for MS relapses requiring therapy by most neurologists.

Of 1,122 MS patients surveyed who had been treated with IV steroids for their relapses, 31% reported no change or a worsening of relapse symptoms following treatment.  Of 894 MS patients treated with oral steroids for relapses, 39% reported no change or a worsening of symptoms following treatment.

"This NARCOMS survey helps to further our understanding about the experiences and perspectives of patients who are suffering from MS relapses," said Ruth Ann Marrie, MD, PhD, Director of the Multiple Sclerosis Clinic at the Health Sciences Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada and NARCOMS representative.  "We hope that such information can be helpful to both physicians and patients in the management of MS."

This survey was one of an ongoing series of patient surveys independently conducted by NARCOMS on a variety of important topics related to MS patient care.  NARCOMS is a non-profit project of the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers and operates the largest North American MS patient self-report registry, with the ultimate goal of improving research, treatment and education.

"These findings provide a major step forward in the understanding of how MS patients who are suffering relapses view their experience with corticosteroid treatment, which has been the most widely-used first-line relapse treatment for nearly three decades," said Steve Cartt, Executive Vice President and Chief Business Officer of Questcor Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOR). "The data confirm the need for additional treatment options for MS relapses.  For many of these patients who do not respond adequately to corticosteroid treatment, Acthar can be a viable treatment option."

A brief abstract containing a portion of the NARCOMS survey findings was submitted to ECTRIMS in May 2011 and is currently available for viewing at: http://registration.akm.ch/einsicht.php?XNABSTRACT_ID=136977&XNSPRACHE_ID=2&XNKONGRESS_ID=150&XNMASKEN_ID=900

The full poster highlighting key findings from the NARCOMS survey presented at the Congress is expected to be available for viewing on the ECTRIMS website within the next 10 business days at: http://www.ectrims.eu/conferences.htm.  

About H.P. Acthar® Gel

H.P. Acthar® Gel is a natural adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) designed to provide a prolonged release after intramuscular or subcutaneous injection. Acthar is indicated for the treatment of acute exacerbations of multiple sclerosis in adults, and as monotherapy for the treatment of IS in infants and children under 2 years of age. It is also indicated to induce a diuresis or a remission of proteinuria in the nephrotic syndrome without uremia of the idiopathic type or that due to lupus erythematosus, and for the treatment of several other diseases and disorders. For more information, please visit www.acthar.com.

About Questcor

Questcor Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company whose products help patients with serious, difficult-to-treat medical conditions. Questcor markets H.P. Acthar® Gel (repository corticotropin injection), which is indicated for the treatment of acute exacerbations of multiple sclerosis in adults, and as monotherapy for the treatment of IS in infants and children under 2 years of age. It is also indicated to induce a diuresis or a remission of proteinuria in the nephrotic syndrome without uremia of the idiopathic type or that due to lupus erythematosus, and for the treatment of several other diseases and disorders.  The Company also markets Doral® (quazepam), which is indicated for the treatment of insomnia characterized by difficulty in falling asleep, frequent nocturnal awakenings, and/or early morning awakenings. For more information, please visit www.questcor.com.


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SOURCE Questcor Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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