New treatment options for mild asthma
There has been an update to the way we approach treating mild asthma, with the inclusion of a dual purpose reliever (budesonide/formoterol): which relieves symptoms and reduces the risk of serious flare-ups by treating inflamed airways.
There are now three options to manage symptoms in mild asthma for adults and adolescents over 12 years in Australia.
- Regular low-dose preventer plus blue/grey reliever as needed
- Dual purpose reliever (budesonide/formoterol) to be used as needed
- Blue/grey reliever to be used as needed to treat symptoms
Read more about the new dual purpose reliever treatment option here.
New or updated medications
The Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) has listed a new combination preventer inhaler for use by people aged 18 years and over with severe asthma. It’s called Trelegy Ellipta 200/62.5/25 (fluticasone furoate/umeclidinium/vilanterol).
Trelegy Ellipta is a new addition to the list of combination preventer medicines
- It is a single daily dose regimen due to the long lasting effects of the medicines it contains.
- It is delivered by the Ellipta device which may be a new device for people with asthma.
Read more about Trelegy Ellipta here.
Atectura Breezhaler (mometasone/indacaterol) is a combination preventer inhaler available by prescription only for adults and adolescents 12 years and over with moderate to severe asthma.
The Atectura Breezhaler is a new addition to the list of combination preventer medicines.
- It is a single daily dose regime due to the long lasting effects of the two medicines it contains: mometasone and indacaterol
- It is delivered by the Breezhaler device which may be a new device for people with asthma. See below for device use instructions
- The Breezhaler device requires the preparation of a capsule inside the device, which may be new for people with asthma
- The capsule is to be used with the device and not swallowed
Atectura Breezhaler comes in three different dose strengths and your doctor will prescribe the dose strength which is the right one for you.
Read more about Atectura Breezhaler here.
Asthma Australia welcomes Enerzair Breezhaler, the first triple therapy in fixed dose combination to be made available in Australia for people with difficult to treat asthma. Enerzair Breezhaler contains the active ingredients (indacaterol, glycopyrronium, mometasone furoate).
The new Enerzair Breezhaler is a new addition to the list of combination preventer medicines.
- It is a single daily dose regime due to the long-lasting effects of the three medicines it contains indacaterol, glycopyrronium, and mometasone. It is delivered by the Breezhaler device which may be a new device for people with asthma. See below for device use instructions
- The Breezhaler device requires the loading of a capsule inside the device, which may be new for people with asthma
- The capsule is to be used with the device and not swallowed.
Asthma Australia welcomes Dupixent (dupliumab), a new monoclonal antibody therapy for people who live with severe uncontrolled asthma caused by type 2 inflammation (allergic or eosinophilic).
Dupixent (dupliumab) should be prescribed by a specialist experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of asthma, for adults and adolescents 12 years and over, and presents another treatment option, now within greater reach of more Australians through the PBS listing. The medication is also suitable for the treatment of moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis (eczema) and has also recently been listed under the PBS for this indication.
Other recent changes
- Updates to the National Asthma Council Australia’s Asthma Handbook (Version 2.1 2020)
- Salbutamol puffers Asmol, Ventolin, and Zempreon now with a dose counter
- Active ingredient prescribing now in place
- Fostair (combination preventer inhaler) for moderate to severe asthma (launch December 1, 2020)
- A new Bricanyl Turbuhaler was introduced in Australia on February 1, 2021
- Spiriva Respimat device has been redesigned
GSK is a campaign partner of Asthma Australia and has not been involved in the development of this webpage.