MTRAC issued two new Commissioning Support reviews in November 2013. The reviews cover melatonin and nalmefene.
The melatonin (Circadin®) summary advises that this drug is suitable for prescribing in primary care for the treatment of primary insomnia. The review notes that this medication reduces sleep latency but had no effect on total sleep time. It was also noted that there are no studies against active treatments for insomnia so this treatment is given a lower place in therapy.
The nalmefene (Selincro®) summary advises that this drug is suitable for restricted prescribing in primary care for the treatment of alcohol dependence in conjunction with continuous psychosocial support. The review notes that this treatment is most effective in a subgroup of patients with a high drinking risk level who fail to reduce their intake before commencing treatment. It is therefore assessed as having a lower place in therapy with relatively weak evidence.
Action: Clinicians should be aware of these reviews and use the recommendations to guide appropriate use of these medicines in current practice.