Iranian-made ALS medicine saves $42,000 per patient annually

January 12, 2020 - 19:20

TEHRAN – The Iranian-made medicine for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), called Alsava, will reduce treatment costs from currently $47,000 to $5,000 per patient annually, IRNA reported.

The first Iranian-made medicine was unveiled during a ceremony in Tehran on Sunday.

The high cost of treatment prompted Iranian pharmacists to try and produce the domestic one, which was previously imported from Japan and costed patients over 20 billion rials (nearly $47,000) annually.

Two knowledge-based companies have succeeded in producing the medicine, which reduces the treatment costs by up to 18 billion rials (nearly $42,000).

ALS is a specific disease that causes the death of neurons controlling voluntary muscles, which is characterized by stiff muscles, muscle twitching, and gradually worsening weakness due to muscles decreasing in size.

The disease can affect people of any age but usually starts around the age of 60 and in inherited cases around the age of 50. The average survival from onset to death is two to four years, though this can vary, and about 10% survive longer than 10 years.

Some 2,000 people in Iran are suffering from the disease.

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