Millions of asthma patients at risk of fatal attacks as drug company WITHDRAWS Flovent – most commonly used inhaler

Millions of Americans could soon be forced to live without a life-saving drug after a pharmaceutical giant announced it would pull its drug from store shelves.

Flovent, the most commonly prescribed medication for people with asthma, will no longer be available in pharmacies starting January 1.

The drug’s manufacturer, GSK, has announced that it will discontinue its branded inhaler and produce an authorized generic version.

The generic drug will be the same version as branded Flovent, which is taken daily to help prevent asthmatic symptoms, GSK said.

About 27 million Americans suffer from asthma – and most rely on Flovent to prevent attacks that can leave them in the hospital

The drug's manufacturer, GSK, has announced that it will discontinue its branded inhaler and produce an authorized generic version.

The drug’s manufacturer, GSK, has announced that it will discontinue its branded inhaler and produce an authorized generic version.

However, doctors warn that patients may struggle to access the alternative because insurers are not required to cover generic versions of some drugs.

This means that some sufferers may have to wait for an entirely new prescription.

Health care experts also criticized the timing of the drugmaker’s policy change: the move comes as respiratory viruses, which can be fatal to asthma patients, are on the rise nationwide.

Dr. Robyn Cohen, director of the Pediatric Pulmonary and Allergy Clinic at Boston Medical Center, told CNNFlovent has been the most commonly used inhaler for nearly three decades.

Flovent is the most commonly prescribed inhaler - but as of January 1, patients will no longer have access to it

Flovent is the most commonly prescribed inhaler – but as of January 1, patients will no longer have access to it

He said: This is what pediatricians reach for most when they decide their patient needs daily preventive medicine…

‘The fact that it stops will be a huge shock to the system for patients, for families and for doctors.

Additionally, patients who have been taking the drug for years may not be able to fill prescriptions – due to insurers’ reluctance to cover the new type of drug.

They could be vulnerable during a dangerous tripledemic of influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and Covid that is hitting America.

Flovent is meant to be taken daily as a preventative for people with asthma. It helps stop the inflammation of the airways, making it easier for sufferers to breathe, and reduces the body’s response to triggers that can make breathing difficult.

Among these triggers are colds and flu making medication more important now than ever.

WHAT IS ASTHMA?

Asthma is a common but incurable condition that affects the small tubes inside the lungs.

It can cause inflammation, or swelling, that blocks the airways and makes breathing difficult.

The condition affects people of all ages and often begins in childhood. Symptoms may improve or even disappear as children grow older, but may return in adulthood.

Symptoms include wheezing, wheezing, chest tightness and coughing, and they may worsen during an asthma attack.

Treatment usually involves inhaled medicine to calm the lungs.

Triggers for the condition include allergies, dust, air pollution, exercise and infections such as a cold or flu.

If you think you or your child has asthma you should visit a doctor, as it can lead to more serious complications such as fatigue or a lung infection.

Source: NHS

Preliminary data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report has nearly 10 million flu cases, 110,000 flu hospitalizations and as many as 9,500 flu deaths so far in the 2023-2024 season.

There was a 13 percent increase in positive flu tests and hospitalizations for the flu are on the rise, with 9,900 people admitted to hospitals this week.

For all respiratory diseases, rates increased by five percent.

Doctors’ visits for respiratory illness are increasing in all age groups, but are highest among children under four.

Emergency department visits for Covid are up nearly seven percent in the most recent week and admissions are up more than 10 percent. Deaths from Covid increased by three percent.

Nearly 27 million Americans suffer from asthma and it is the leading cause of chronic disease in children.

Asthma is a chronic disease that causes swelling and inflammation of the airways, leading to narrowing of the passageway that carries air from the nose and mouth to the lungs.

Symptoms include trouble breathing and shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing and chest pain.

There is no cure for the disease, but daily medication to manage symptoms, as well as certain lifestyle changes, can help prevent potentially life-threatening complications.

While most asthma patients can live their daily lives as normal, some sufferers with severe forms of the disease are at risk of life-threatening flare-ups, or asthma attacks.

During an asthma attack, the lining of the airways becomes severely inflamed, mucus clogs the airways and the muscles tighten around the airways, making it difficult and stressful. in breathing.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that in 2021, the most recent data available, 9.8 million people experienced an asthma attack, including 1.8 million children and 8 million adults.

And, every day in the US, 5,000 people visit the emergency room because of asthma and 11 people die.

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Image Source : www.dailymail.co.uk

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