The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
FROM
ISSUE
1298
In Brief: New Propellants for Albuterol Metered-Dose Inhalers
Subscribers: Log in to read full article.  Not a subscriber?  Subscribe or purchase article.

Inhaled drugs for asthma are available in the US mainly in pressurized metered-dose inhalers (MDIs), which require a propellant, and dry powder inhalers, which do not. The chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) propellants in MDIs are being replaced by hydrofluoroalkane (HFA) propellants for environmental reasons: CFCs contribute to the depletion of the ozone layer. December 31, 2008 will be the last day that albuterol MDIs using CFC propellants can be sold in the US. The FDA is expected to announce a termination date for other CFC-containing products in the near future.

Three HFA albuterol inhalers and one HFA levalbuterol inhaler have been approved by the FDA. None is available generically. HFA inhalers require priming — firing 4 puffs into the air (3 with ProAir) — the first time they are used, and after 2 weeks of non-use (3 days with Xopenex HFA).

In general, HFA sprays taste different, are less forceful, and are ... more      

The Medical Letter is a subscriber-funded nonprofit organization that publishes critical appraisals of new prescription drugs and comparative reviews of drugs for common diseases.

Would you like to read the rest of this article?  Gain access below.

Subscribe
Subscriptions to The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics include:
  • Print version published and mailed biweekly (26 issues/year)
  • Unlimited online access to current and past issues (1988 - present)
  • Mobile App for iOS, Android, and Kindle Fire
  • FREE online per issue CME/CE
Purchase this article:
Title: In Brief: New Propellants for Albuterol Metered-Dose Inhalers
Article code: 1298c
 Electronic, downloadable article - $45
Gain access through your organization
Ask your librarian to consider an Institutional Subscription to The Medical Letter.
Recommend to your librarian