PGA golf pro Tim Herron has more than passing knowledge of hand deformity Dupuytren’s contracture: He, his father and his sister all have the condition. So he reached out to Endo Pharmaceuticals, maker of Xiaflex, to find out how he and the pharma company could work together on education.
The result is a disease awareness public relations campaign that features Herron and his family telling their story of living with Dupuytren’s and sharing how it has affected their lives.
This is the second disease awareness effort for Dupuytren from Endo this year. The first was an unbranded TV campaign that ran from June through the end of September in 60 targeted markets, Nick Ferrara, senior director of marketing at Endo, said in an email interview. He added that the TV campaign may run again in 2018, but that there are no plans to run it again in 2017. More media elements, including a paid social media push, will be added through the end of the year as part of the Herron PR effort.
“Tim’s story and connection to Dupuytren’s Contracture is one we thought many people could relate to, since we all rely on our hands to get through life to a certain extent. While most people probably have never heard of this condition, Dupuytren’s Contracture is more common that people might think," he said, adding that according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, Dupuytren’s contracture occurs in about 5% of the U.S. population.
As a result of the initial TV campaign, Ferrara said, hand specialists from across the country have told Endo that patients have come in to talk about the possibility of Dupuytren’s and mentioned the TV ads or online ads.
Endo’s drug Xiaflex is approved to treat Dupuytren’s as well as Peyronie's disease, which causes an abnormal curvature in the penis. In the works, however, are early and promising trials in treating cellulite, for which there is no current FDA-approved drug.