On behalf of investigators in the NOH301 study, Dr. Kaufmann and colleagues reported the results of a multicenter controlled trial to determine the effects of droxidopa as a treatment for neurogenic orthostatic hypotension (a fall in blood pressure on standing caused by the failure to release norepinephrine). The results of the study, published in Neurology®, show that treatment with the oral norepinephrine precursor improved symptoms of dizziness/lightheadedness in a short-term double-blind trial. Standing blood pressure was higher and patients were able to stand longer on droxidopa than on with placebo. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved droxidopa for the treatment for neurogenic orthostatic hypotension in February 2014. Dr. Kaufmann was the Principal Investigator for the multi-center international study of droxidpa.
Pharmacological options for the management of low blood pressure on standing are not like those for high blood pressure. Physicians treating high blood pressure have a number of approved drugs that can be prescribed, many times in combination. Prior the approval of droxidopa, there was only one approved drug (midodrine) for the management of low blood pressure on standing. Not all patients respond to midodrine, and some even remain symptomatic on the maximum dose. Having droxidopa approved as a treatment option for patients with orthostatic hypotension is an important step in the management of this condition.
The Center is current recruiting patients with NOH in a long-term clinical trial of droxidopa.