According to a recent article in Medscape, a new drug has cleared the final hurdles for FDA approval and is now available for treatment of patients with COPD: Stiolto Respimat (Boehringer Ingelheim). This once-daily oral inhalation spray combines tiotropium and olodaterol.
Olodaterol is a long-acting beta-agonist that improves airflow within 5 minutes. Tiotropium is a long-acting anticolinergic.
It should be noted that Stiolto Respimat does not replace the use of a rescue inhaler. Rather, it’s indicated for the long-term treatment of airflow obstruction. COPD patients with chronic bronchitis or emphysema are candidates for treatment with the drug; those with asthma or acute deterioration of COPD are not. In fact, long-acting beta-agonists have been shown to increase the risk for asthma-related death.
The newly approved drug was tested in clinical trials involving more than 5,000 individuals, and was found to significantly improve lung function better than either drug acting alone. The most common side effects have been nasopharyngitis, cough, and back pain.
For more information on tiotropium and olodaterol, and the approval of Stiolto Respimat, consult the FDA website at http://www.fda.gov/newsevents/newsroom/pressannouncements/ucm407465.htm.
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