Today, Shire Pharma Canada announced that Health Canada has approved Xiidra (lifitegrast ophthalmic solution 5%) to treat people with dry eye disease.

Dry eye disease is a chronic and possibly progressive disease that can result from multiple factors. The symptoms may include scratchiness, stinging, stringy mucus in or around the eyes, blurry vision and excess tearing.

Xiidra is anti-inflammatory prescription eye drop used to treat the signs and symptoms of dry eye disease.

Xiidra is the first drug to be approved for dry eye syndrome in over 7 years (Restatis was approved by Health Canada in September 2010).
In a news release, W. Bruce Jackson MD, professor of ophthalmology at Ottawa Hospital Research Institute  said, “The approval of Xiidra in Canada gives patients a new option to address both the signs and symptoms of dry eye disease.”

The approval is based on 4 clinical trials showing Xiidra to reduce eye dryness scores in all 4 studies. Further, a long-term safety study showed the eye drops to be found well-tolerated with no serious treatment-emergent ocular adverse events.

The most common ocular adverse reactions were eye irritation (18%), eye pain (13%) and instillation site reactions (12%). The most common non-ocular adverse reaction was altered taste sensation (dysgeusia) (14%).

A video accompanying the news release by Shire Pharma Canada is shown below.