Article révisé par les pairs
Résumé : Objectives: Myelofibrosis (MF) is a severe disease, with decreased life expectancy and heavy symptom burden. Ruxolitinib is the only approved pharmacotherapy for the treatment of MF patients. In Belgium, ruxolitinib is only reimbursed for MF patients with splenomegaly for whom the disease is categorized as intermediate-2 or high risk. The improvement of symptoms without spleen volume reduction is not considered sufficient to continue treatment. The aim of this manuscript is to provide guidance for the safe and effective administration of ruxolitinib, considering the particularities of the Belgian reimbursement criteria. Methods: Our recommendations are based on a consensus reached during two meetings, where available data and observations derived from clinical experience were discussed. Results and discussion: We recommend changing the current Belgian reimbursement conditions to include the evaluation of disease-related symptoms along with splenomegaly to decide whether ruxolitinib treatment should be continued or not. Indeed, the decrease in disease-related symptoms seems to be an equally important parameter as the decrease in splenic volume in the evaluation of the response to ruxolitinib. We also advocate for the treatment with ruxolitinib of MF patients in lower-risk categories with severe disease-related symptoms, as this drug could greatly improve their quality of life. Optimization of the ruxolitinib dose is recommended to avoid an unnecessary decrease in platelet count or hemoglobin that may jeopardize treatment continuation. Conclusion: With the aim to optimize the treatment of MF patients, the Belgian regulation for ruxolitinib should be revised in terms of reimbursement criteria, dose titration, stopping rules, and patient follow-up.