Milestone Pharmaceuticals Launches Disease Education Campaign in Observance of National Women’s Health Week
Montreal, QC, CA, and Charlotte, NC, [May 13, 2019] – Milestone Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: MIST), a Phase 3 clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing and commercializing etripamil for the treatment of cardiovascular indications, today announced the launch of a disease education campaign timed with U.S. National Women’s Health Week. The campaign will focus on raising awareness for a recurring and sporadic heart arrhythmia called paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (PSVT). Women are disproportionately impacted by PSVT, being twice as likely as men to develop it.1 And yet, recent research suggests they are taken less seriously and misdiagnosed more often,2 with symptoms commonly being mistaken for a panic attack or anxiety.
“As we progress in our development of novel small molecule therapeutics, we strive to learn from patients and their caregivers about the impact and burden of PSVT,” said Joseph Oliveto, President and Chief Executive Officer of Milestone Pharmaceuticals. “By highlighting firsthand experiences of strong women who are living with and managing PSVT, we’re able to bring awareness to those who are undiagnosed and hope to those recently diagnosed. It’s an important part of our goal to partner with patients to create and share educational resources that aide the patient’s empowerment over this condition’s inherent challenges.”
The disease education campaign consists of a series of radio interviews and a full-page advertorial, slated to run in print and digital outlets. Both elements will feature the diagnosis and treatment journey of Donnette Smith, a PSVT patient herself, and President of Mended Hearts, the largest non-profit peer-to-peer heart patient support network.
Due to the sporadic nature of the episodes, people may experience significant anxiety and fear of the next episode. Every PSVT episode is unique, but common symptoms include: rapid pulse, chest pressure or pain, shortness of breath, anxiety, lightheadedness or dizziness, fainting and sudden onset of fatigue.
“The uncertainty of living with PSVT is equally challenging, if not more so, than the physical symptoms,” said Dr. Kathryn Wood, associate professor at Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing Emory University, who has studied the emotional toll of PSVT, on women in particular.3 “It looms over you, affecting self-esteem and causing you to avoid daily activities such as driving, work and time with family and friends.”
The disease education campaign is a follow-on patient resource to Milestone Pharmaceuticals’ Outsmart PSVT, an educational website that aims to fill the long-standing information gap in the PSVT community about the definition, diagnosis and management of this disorder. Collectively, the campaign and website build upon Milestone’s Pharmaceuticals’ foundational offering for the patient community: The PSVT Place, a patient registry that allows users to document their PSVT episodes and compare their experience to anonymized summary data of fellow registrants. Having this available registry of information about patient experiences with PSVT may help doctors better understand how patients feel and act before and after diagnosis and inform treatment options. It may also help patients and families better understand how to live with the condition and treatment.
“If the resources we have now were around when I was first experiencing symptoms, I could have saved years of living in uncertainty,” said Donnette Smith, who endured 10 years before receiving her diagnosis. “I hope to motivate others to never give up in seeking the support they need to get a swift, accurate diagnosis. Having PSVT doesn’t need to define you. Every woman out there can take control of her health.”
To learn more about Milestone Pharmaceutical’s commitment to improving the lives of people living with PSVT or other episodic cardiovascular conditions, visit milestonepharma.com.
PSVT is a condition that Milestone estimates affects approximately two million Americans and results in at least 600,000 healthcare claims per year in the U.S. alone. 4During a PSVT episode, patients may feel palpitations while heart rate increases dramatically, sometimes exceeding 250 beats per minute.5 Although the condition is not life threatening, it causes great distress to the patient and can result in an emergency department visit where a patient is usually administered intravenous medication.
About Milestone Pharmaceuticals
Milestone, headquartered in Montreal, Canada with a U.S. subsidiary in Charlotte, N.C., is a Phase 3 clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing and commercializing the investigational new drug etripamil for the treatment of cardiovascular indications. Etripamil is a novel, potent and short-acting calcium channel blocker designed by Milestone and being developed as a rapid-onset nasal spray to be administered by the patient to terminate episodes of PSVT as they occur.
1Orejarena, L.A., et al. Paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia in the general population. Journal of American College of Cardiology. 1998;31(1): 150-7.
2Carnlof, C. et al. Women with PSVT are often misdiagnosed, referred later than men, and have more symptoms after ablation. Scandinavian Cardiovascular Journal. 2017;51(6): 299-307.
3Wood, K.A., et al. Supraventricular tachycardia and the struggle to be believed. European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing. 2007;6(4), 293-302.
4Sacks, N.C. et al; Prevalence of Paroxysmal Supraventricular Tachycardia (PSVT) in the US in Patients Under 65 Years of Age; Abstract and Oral Presentation at the International Academy of Cardiology Annual Scientific Sessions 2018, 23rd World Congress on Heart Disease; Precision Xtract, Boston, MA, USA
5Colucci, R.A. Common types of supraventricular tachycardia: diagnosis and management.; American Family Physician. 2010;82(8), 942-952.