Nanoparticle albumin-bound paclitaxel for pancreatic cancer: 24 month predicted versus actual analysis

Page last updated: 2 March 2018

Drug utilisation sub-committee (DUSC)

September 2017



To compare the predicted and actual utilisation of nanoparticle albumin-bound paclitaxel (nab-paclitaxel) for stage IV (metastatic) adenocarcinoma of the pancreas in the first 24 months of PBS listing. Nab-paclitaxel was PBS listed for this indication on 1 November 2014.


Stage IV (metastatic) adenocarcinoma of the pancreas. The treatment must be in combination with gemcitabine, and the condition must not have been treated previously with PBS-subsidised therapy, and the patient must have an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status score of 2 or less.

A patient who has progressive disease when treated with this drug is no longer eligible for PBS-subsidised treatment with this drug.

Data Source / methodology

Prescription claim data for nab-paclitaxel for adenocarcinoma of the pancreas were extracted from November 2014 to March 2017.

Key Findings

  • Since listing, 3,284 patients have been supplied nab-paclitaxel for adenocarcinoma of the pancreas.
  • In 2016 1,221 patients initiated therapy and 1,708 patients were treated.
  • The number of treated patients per year is similar to expected, but the number of prescriptions (treatments) and vials was lower than predicted. The main reasons for this difference may be PBS patients requiring a delay in the next dose and dose reducing more than patients in the trial which was used to inform the estimates of use.

Full Report