Asthma treatment option for PBS reimbursement

Since August 1, new once-daily asthma treatment option Arnuity Ellipta is being reimbursed on the PBS, according to GSK Australia.

The listing provides “affordable access to another treatment option for suitable asthma patients aged 12 years and over”.

“This new once-daily inhaler adds to the treatment options available to patients, which will be welcomed by patients and carers,” said Professor Greg King, respiratory physician at Sydney’s Royal North Shore Hospital and The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research.

GSK Australia Medical Director Andrew Weekes added: “While there are still people with uncontrolled asthma symptoms, GSK will continue our research and development efforts globally and in Australia to expand the range of available treatment options for them.”

Said to contain the active ingredient fluticasone furoate (a corticosteroid), Arnuity Ellipta is registered for use in patients with asthma.

Arnuity Ellipta does not replace a quick-acting inhaler (eg, Ventolin) in the event of a sudden attack of breathlessness or wheezing and is not suitable for children under the age of 12.

Other contraindications are said to include:

  • Lactose or milk protein allergy
  • Allergy to fluticasone furoate and other active ingredients

Reportedly, Arnuity Ellipta may interfere with ketoconazole and ritonavir.

Common side effects are said to include:

  • Headache
  • Itchy, runny or blocked nose
  • Sore, raised patches in the mouth or throat
  • Inflammation of the lungs and sinuses
  • Infection of the nose sinuses and throat
  • Flu
  • Pain and irritation in the back of the mouth and throat
  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Back pain

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