COPD Drug News

LAMA/LABA Combination Inhalers

A long-acting muscarinic antagonist, or LAMA, is a medication for people with COPD that helps keep airways open and mucous secretions down. An example would be Spiriva® (tiotropium bromide).

A long-acting beta2 agonist, or LABA, also works to keep airways open. Animage033-2 example would be Brovana®. Breo® Ellipta® is an example of a combination of these two medications. Anoro® Ellipta® is a new LAMA/ LABA combination (ume- clidinium  and vilanter- ol inhalation powder) from GlaxoSmith Kline (GSK). Talk to your physician about this new medication and if it would be right for you. If you visit, you may be able to receive a free month’s supply.

Triple Drug Inhaler Approved

GSK also announced recently the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has ap- proved a brand new triple drug inhaler for treatment of COPD. This very first triple inhaler contains fluticasone furoate, an inhaled corticosteroid; umeclidinium, a long-acting muscarinic antagonist; and vilanterol, a long-acting beta2 agonist. The inhaler will be sold under the brand name Trelegy® Ellipta®.

Spiriva® May Slow Progression of COPDimage035

Spiriva® may help slow the progression of COPD if given in the early stages of the disease, a new study in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests. Researchers found that the drug helped pre- serve more lung function over two years. It also cut down on symptom flare-ups and boosted quality of life.

Until now, nothing has been shown to slow the progression of early COPD – other than smoking cessation. Current guidelines from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommend against screening for COPD in people who are symptom free, partly because there was no good evidence that early treatment slowed the disease down. This study’s findings could change things!

Clear the Air!

Stiolto® Respimat®  In- haler is a combination in- haler of tiotropium and the LABA Olodaterol from Boehringer Ingelheim. The company recently pro- duced a documentary film, “Clear the Air: Opening Up about COPD” that can be seen at

Their goal is to motivate and empower people with COPD to take control of their care and talk with their doctor about a treatment plan that works for them.

Study Results Published

Based on a retrospective study in the International Journal of Chronic Obstruc­ tive Pulmonary Disease, long-term treat- ment with budesonide/formoterol (Sym- bicort®) was associated with fewer severe exacerbations and pneumonia than fluti- casone/salmeterol (Advair®).