Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE and TASE: TEVA) announced Aug. 7 that the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has approved QVAR RediHaler (beclomethasone dipropionate HFA) inhalation aerosol, a breath-actuated inhaler for the maintenance treatment of asthma as a prophylactic therapy in patients four years of age and older. QVAR RediHaler is not indicated for the relief of acute bronchospasm. The product is expected to become commercially available in both 40mcg and 80mcg strengths to patients by prescription during the first quarter of 2018.
QVAR® RediHaler™ differs from conventional metered-dose inhalers (MDIs) as it delivers medication via a breath-actuated MDI, eliminating the need for hand-breath coordination during inhalation. QVAR® RediHaler™ administers the same active drug ingredient found in QVAR® (beclomethasone dipropionate HFA) Inhalation Aerosol, with a different mode of delivery. In addition, QVAR® RediHaler™ is designed to be used without shaking or priming. It should not be used with a spacer or volume holding chamber.
“When working to manage asthma on a daily basis, proper administration of medication is of paramount importance,” said Dr. Warner W. Carr, MD, Associate Medical Director of Southern California Research at Allergy and Asthma Associates of Southern California Medical Group in Mission Viejo, California. “However, research has indicated that approximately 76 percent of patients still struggle to use their MDI inhalers correctly1, thus placing them at increased risk for asthma exacerbations. From a clinical perspective, QVAR® RediHaler™ is a much-needed treatment option for these patients who may be experiencing continued difficulty with hand-breath coordination.”
“It’s important that we uncover new opportunities to take longstanding, clinically effective medications, such as QVAR®, and incorporate them into device technologies that may help address key ongoing issues for patients, including inhaler technique,” said Tushar Shah, MD, Head, Late Stage Development at Teva Pharmaceuticals. “The FDA approval of QVAR® RediHaler™ brings to market inhaler technology aimed at enabling patients to more accurately administer the medication and ensuring they are receiving a proper dose with each inhalation.”
QVAR® MDI with dose counter, the currently available form of QVAR®, was originally approved by the FDA in 2014. Teva plans to discontinue sales of this current QVAR® MDI formulation upon the launch of QVAR® RediHaler™ in the first quarter of 2018. Patients and caregivers are encouraged to speak with a healthcare professional about how this transition may impact their current treatment plan.
This approval is supported by Teva’s clinical development program for QVAR® RediHaler™, which includes data from one Phase I and four Phase III studies that evaluated the safety and efficacy of the product in asthma patients ages four years and older.
QVAR® RediHaler™ (beclomethasone dipropionate HFA) Inhalation Aerosol is indicated for the maintenance treatment of asthma as prophylactic therapy in patients 4 years of age or older.
Important Limitation of Use: QVAR RediHaler Inhalation Aerosol is NOT indicated for the relief of acute bronchospasm.
Important Safety Information
- Contraindications: QVAR RediHaler is contraindicated in:
- Primary treatment of status asthmaticus or other acute episodes of asthma where intensive measures are required
- Patients with known hypersensitivity to beclomethasone dipropionate or any of the ingredients in QVAR RediHaler
- Localized infections: Infections with Candida albicans have occurred in the mouth and pharynx in some patients receiving QVAR RediHaler. Advise rinsing of mouth with water without swallowing after use. If oropharyngeal candidiasis develops, QVAR RediHaler may need to be temporarily interrupted under close medical supervision
- Deterioration of asthma and acute episodes: Do not use QVAR RediHaler for the relief of acute symptoms. Instruct patients to contact their physician immediately if episodes of asthma that are not responsive to bronchodilators occur during the course of treatment with QVAR RediHaler
- Transferring Patients from Systemic Corticosteroid Therapy: Particular care is needed in patients who are transferred from systemically active corticosteroids to QVAR RediHaler because deaths due to adrenal insufficiency have occurred in asthmatic patients during and after transfer from systemic corticosteroids to less systemically available inhaled corticosteroids. Taper patients slowly from systemic corticosteroids if transferring to QVAR RediHaler
- Immunosuppression: Patients who are on drugs that suppress the immune system, such as corticosteroids, are more susceptible to infections than healthy individuals and should avoid exposure to chicken pox or measles. Inhaled corticosteroids should be used with caution, if at all, in patients with active or quiescent tuberculosis infection of the respiratory tract; untreated systemic fungal, bacterial, parasitic, or viral infections; or ocular herpes simplex
- Paradoxical Bronchospasm: Inhaled corticosteroids may produce inhalation-induced bronchospasm with an immediate increase in wheezing after dosing that may be life-threatening. If this occurs with QVAR RediHaler, it should be treated immediately with an inhaled, short-acting bronchodilator. Treatment with QVAR RediHaler should be discontinued and alternate therapy instituted
- Hypersensitivity reactions: Hypersensitivity reactions, such as urticaria, angioedema, rash, and bronchospasm, may occur after administration of QVAR RediHaler. Discontinue QVAR RediHaler if such reactions occur
- Hypercorticism and Adrenal Suppression: It is possible that systemic corticosteroid effects such as hypercorticism and adrenal suppression may appear in a small number of patients, particularly at higher than recommended doses. If such changes occur, reduce the QVAR RediHaler dose slowly, consistent with accepted procedures for reducing systemic corticosteroids and for management of asthma symptoms
- Effects on Growth: Orally inhaled corticosteroids, including QVAR RediHaler, may cause a reduction in growth velocity when administered to pediatric patients. Routinely monitor the growth of pediatric patients receiving QVAR RediHaler. To minimize the systemic effects, titrate to the lowest dosage that effectively controls symptoms
- Reduction in Bone Mineral Density (BMD): Decreases in bone mineral density have been observed with long-term administration of products containing inhaled corticosteroids. Patients with major risk factors for decreased bone mineral content should be monitored and treated with established standards of care
- Eye Disorders: Glaucoma, increased intraocular pressure, blurred vision and cataracts have been reported following the long-term administration of inhaled corticosteroids. Therefore, close monitoring is warranted in patients with a change in vision or with a history of increased intraocular pressure, blurred vision, glaucoma, and/or cataracts
- Adverse Reactions: Most common adverse reactions (incidence ≥3% and >placebo) include oral candidiasis, upper respiratory tract infection, nasopharyngitis, allergic rhinitis, oropharyngeal pain and sinusitis.
Please click here for full Prescribing Information: http://www.qvarredihaler.com/pdf/PI.pdf
A copy may be requested from the US Medical Information Contact Center for Teva Specialty Medicines at 888-4-TEVA-RX (888-483-8279) and [email protected] or Teva’s Public Relations or Investor Relations contacts.