ST. CHARLES COUNTY, MO (KTVI) - This month the Food and Drug Administration approved a new drug that could give thousands of Cystic Fibrosis patient’s new hope. It’s called Orkambi and for the lucky few who have been taking it in a drug trial for the past year and a half it’s nothing short of amazing.
Twenty-two-year-old Daniel Seddon is one of those lucky few and has been taking the drug for about a year and a half and says he’s seen steady improvement in his symptoms. CF is caused by a genetic defect that creates a buildup of sticky mucus in the lungs and digestive system. For about 8, 500 of the 30,000 Americans who have CF, this drug is designed to actually treat the cause of the disease rather than the symptoms. Though it does treat the most common CF defect it’s not yet approved for patients younger than 12.
Seddon says the improvement since he’s been on the drug is dramatic. However, the cost can be as crippling as the disease. Right now, Orkambi costs around $259,000 a year if insurance doesn’t pay. Seddon says he knows firsthand what this drug means and how many people out there could really benefit from it. His parent’s hope that insurance companies will come through and help ease some of the burden for CF patients.