TUESDAY, Feb. 8, 2022 (HealthDay News) — Switching from a pressurized metered-dose inhaler (pMDI) to dry powder inhaler (DPI)-based maintenance therapy reduces environmental impacts and does not worsen control asthma in asthmatic patients, according to a study published online February 7 in Thorax.
Ashley Woodcock, MD, of the University of Manchester in the UK, and colleagues performed a post-hoc analysis on data from a subset of patients from the Salford Lung Study in Asthma to compare the effects of switching from a pMDI to a PGD-based maintenance therapy for asthma control and greenhouse gas emissions. The analysis included 1081 patients who switched from pMDI to PGD and 1155 who continued their usual care treatment.
Researchers found that annual greenhouse gas emissions (carbon dioxide equivalents in kg per patient) for maintenance therapy plus reliever therapy were significantly lower with fluticasone furoate/vilanterol PGD therapy (FF/VI) (the change group) compared to usual care (geometric least squares mean, 108 kg versus 240 kg). The FF/VI DPI treatment group also had consistently superior asthma control over the 12 months compared to usual care.
“Each puff of a [metered dose inhaler] is equivalent to driving a mile in a family car, so one inhaler is equivalent to driving 200 miles…but a powder inhaler is about one-twentieth of that,” Woodcock said in a statement. “It’s basically evolution, not revolution. When talking to patients, healthcare professionals should have a conversation about the environmental footprint of their inhalers.”
Several authors disclosed financial ties to GlaxoSmithKline, which funded the study.