Therapeutic comparison of a new budesonide/formoterol pMDI with budesonide pMDI and budesonide/formoterol DPI in asthma

A H Morice, S Peterson, O Beckman, D Osmanliev
International Journal of Clinical Practice 2007, 61 (11): 1874-83

BACKGROUND: Budesonide/formoterol is an effective treatment for both asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. This study compared the efficacy and safety of a novel hydrofluoroalkane (HFA) pressurised metered-dose inhaler (pMDI) formulation of budesonide/formoterol with that of budesonide pMDI and budesonide/formoterol dry-powder inhaler (DPI; Turbuhaler).

METHODS: This was a 12-week, multinational, randomised, double-blind, double-dummy study involving patients aged > or = 12 years with asthma. All patients had a forced expiratory volume in 1 s of 50-90% predicted normal and were inadequately controlled on inhaled corticosteroids (500-1600 microg/day) alone. Following a 2-week run-in, during which they received their usual medication, patients were randomised (two inhalations twice daily) to budesonide pMDI 200 microg, budesonide/formoterol DPI 160/4.5 microg or budesonide/formoterol pMDI 160/4.5 microg. The primary efficacy end-point was change from baseline in morning peak expiratory flow (PEF).

RESULTS: In total, 680 patients were randomised, of whom 668 were included in the primary analysis. Therapeutically equivalent increases in morning PEF were observed with budesonide/formoterol pMDI (29.3 l/min) and budesonide/formoterol DPI (32.0 l/min) (95% confidence interval: -10.4 to 4.9; p = 0.48). The increase in morning PEF with budesonide/formoterol pMDI was significantly higher than with budesonide pMDI (+28.7 l/min; p < 0.001). Similar improvements with budesonide/formoterol pMDI vs. budesonide pMDI were seen for all secondary efficacy end-points. Both combination treatments were similarly well tolerated.

CONCLUSIONS: Budesonide/formoterol, administered via the HFA pMDI or DPI, is an effective and well-tolerated treatment for adult and adolescent patients with asthma, with both devices being therapeutically equivalent.

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