Sensoready Pen easier to use for MS therapy than other devices: Survey

MS patients, nurses like autoinjector best for giving Kesimpta at home

Margarida Maia, PhD avatar

by Margarida Maia, PhD |

Share this article:

Share article via email
An illustration shows two people talking in a meeting.

Both people with multiple sclerosis (MS) and their nurses prefer the Sensoready Pen for administering Kesimpta (ofatumumab) — an approved MS treatment that’s injected subcutaneously, or under the skin — mostly because it’s easier to use than other available devices, a survey study found.

With this pen “patients are able to inject independently and easily, which allows them to be in control of their treatment and have a positive impact on treatment adherence,” the researchers wrote, noting that “more than 80% of patients and nurses rated the overall satisfaction with the Sensoready autoinjector pen as ‘Very Good’ or ‘Excellent.’”

The study, “Patient and nurse preference for Sensoready autoinjector pen versus other autoinjectors in multiple sclerosis: results from a pilot multicenter survey,” was published in BMC Neurology.

Recommended Reading
A hand is shown putting money into a medicine bottle in this illustration.

Kesimpta More Effective, Costs Less Than Most DMTs for RRMS: Analysis

Survey shows 9/10 of nurses and 8/10 of patients prefer Sensoready Pen

Kesimpta is an antibody-based medication that’s designed to slow MS progression and prevent relapses. It works by targeting B-cells, a type of immune cell that drives inflammatory damage in people with the disease.

The therapy is approved for relapsing forms of MS and is designed to be self-administered by patients at home after an initial training period with a nurse. While it is available in single-dose prefilled syringes, patients also can administer Kesimpta using an autoinjector device called the Sensoready Pen.

Autoinjectors have generally been preferred by MS patients for the administration of their disease-modifying therapies. However, “there is a lack of data directly comparing the various autoinjectors available for MS,” the researchers wrote.

To address that, Novartis, the company that developed Kesimpta, teamed up with several MS nurses to develop a survey about the attributes of autoinjectors that most mattered to them, and to their patients.

The survey directly compared the Sensoready autoinjector pen with six other autoinjectors for either subcutaneous or intramuscular — directly into-the-muscle — injection of MS treatments.

These included Rebidose/Rebismart for the injection of Rebif (interferon beta-1a), the Avonex pen designed for administering Avonex (interferon beta-1a), the Autoject/YpsoMate autoinjectors for Copaxone (glatiramer acetate), and the Plegridy pen for injecting Plegridy (peginterferon beta-1a).

The survey initially was piloted on a small scale in Germany, but then expanded to cover 80 patients and 50 nurses from across the U.S., Germany, France, and Italy, where the devices are widely used.

The patient group included individuals with a diagnosis of relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) who were currently using one of the six devices for an average of 4.6 years — use overall ranged from two months to 14 years. On average, it took patients less than five minutes to read the Sensoready Pen’s instruction leaflet and give themselves a dummy injection that contained no medication.

Nurses had been in their current role for at least three years, and saw an average 38 MS patients per month as part of their practice. They had experience in training patients on at least two of the devices, and were asked to compare the Sensoready Pen with any two of those administration methods.

During a 45-minute interview, both patients and nurses were asked open-ended and close-ended questions about their preferences for different features of a device. Each was asked to rate the importance of these features on a scale of one to 10, where one meant “not at all important” and 10 meant “extremely important.”

The results showed that the most important features for patients and nurses were that the self-injection should be easy to perform with the device, and that patients should be able to use it independently. Both scored a total 9.4 points.

Positive perception … plays an important role in patient satisfaction and treatment adherence.

The Sensoready Pen was preferred by both patients and nurses over other similar devices for the majority of important features. The highest-scoring features were ease to perform an autoinjection, ability to use independently, and ease of preparation and setup. All three scored a mean of 9.4 points.

Most patients and nurses (89%) said that the Sensoready Pen was easier to grip than other similar devices. Moreover, 84% said it was easy to perform an autoinjection with the Sensoready Pen, and 82% said the device had a convenient shape.

Overall, the majority preferred the Sensoready Pen over other similar devices (84% vs. 16%), and the response was similar for both patients (83%) and nurses (86%). More than 80% of the survey respondents rated their overall satisfaction with the Sensoready Pen as very good or better.

“Considering choice of treatment based on the device alone, 9/10 nurses and 8/10 patients preferred the Sensoready autoinjector pen over their current device,” the researchers wrote. “This positive perception … plays an important role in patient satisfaction and treatment adherence.”

Because the study surveyed relatively few patients and nurses, and was based on a demonstration with a dummy injection, “further studies are required to explore the potential benefits of improved compliance using the autoinjector on disease outcomes,” the researchers concluded.

Damian Washington video 2 thumbnail