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      Vulnerable COPD patients with comorbidities: the role of roflumilast

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          Roflumilast is a selective phosphodiesterase-4 (PDE-4) inhibitor that was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in February 2011 for the management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Literature was retrieved through PubMed using the terms “roflumilast” and “COPD”. Reference citations from publications identified were also reviewed. All articles published in English using the terms “roflumilast” and “COPD” were retrieved. For evaluation of clinical efficacy, published Phase III studies and pooled analyses of Phase III trials were included. In seven published Phase III trials, roflumilast at 500 μg daily showed improvements in lung function as measured by pre- and post-bronchodilator forced expiratory volume in 1 second. Roflumilast appears to be useful in vulnerable patients who are at high risk for exacerbations. Roflumilast was found to be effective when administered alone and with concomitant long-acting bronchodilator therapy in the Caucasian and Asian population. Patients with severe-to-very severe COPD, chronic bronchitis, and frequent history of exacerbations derived the greatest benefit with roflumilast. Compared to the standard of care therapies, roflumilast is more cost-prohibitive. Roflumilast was well tolerated, with the most common adverse events observed in clinical trials being diarrhea, nausea, and headache. Weight loss and increased risk of psychiatric events have also been observed with roflumilast in clinical trials. Roflumilast is a safe and effective option for the treatment of COPD.

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          Most cited references 33

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          Long-term treatment with inhaled budesonide in persons with mild chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who continue smoking. European Respiratory Society Study on Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.

          Although patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) should stop smoking, some do not. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study, we evaluated the effect of the inhaled glucocorticoid budesonide in patients with mild COPD who continued smoking. After a six-month run-in period, we randomly assigned 1277 subjects (mean age, 52 years; mean forced expiratory volume in one second [FEV1], 77 percent of the predicted value; 73 percent men) to twice-daily treatment with 400 microg of budesonide or placebo, inhaled from a dry-powder inhaler, for three years. Of the 1277 subjects, 912 (71 percent) completed the study. Among these subjects, the median decline in the FEV1 after the use of a bronchodilator over the three-year period was 140 ml in the budesonide group and 180 ml in the placebo group (P=0.05), or 4.3 percent and 5.3 percent of the predicted value, respectively. During the first six months of the study, the FEV1 improved at the rate of 17 ml per year in the budesonide group, as compared with a decline of 81 ml per year in the placebo group (P<0.001). From nine months to the end of treatment, the FEV1 declined at similar rates in the two groups (P=0.39). Ten percent of the subjects in the budesonide group and 4 percent of those in the placebo group had skin bruising (P<0.001). Newly diagnosed hypertension, bone fractures, postcapsular cataracts, myopathy, and diabetes occurred in less than 5 percent of the subjects, and the diagnoses were equally distributed between the groups. In patients with mild COPD who continue smoking, the use of inhaled budesonide is associated with a small one-time improvement in lung function but does not appreciably affect the long-term progressive decline.
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            Effect of inhaled triamcinolone on the decline in pulmonary function in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

            Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) results from a progressive decline in lung function, which is thought to be the consequence of airway inflammation. We hypothesized that antiinflammatory therapy with inhaled corticosteroids would slow this decline. We enrolled 1116 persons with COPD whose forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) was 30 to 90 percent of the predicted value in a 10-center, placebo-controlled, randomized trial of inhaled triamcinolone acetonide administered at a dose of 600 microg twice daily. The primary outcome measure was the rate of decline in FEV1 after the administration of a bronchodilator. The secondary outcome measures included respiratory symptoms, use of health care services, and airway reactivity. In a substudy of 412 participants, we measured bone density in the lumbar spine and femur at base line and one and three years after the beginning of treatment. The mean duration of follow-up was 40 months. The rate of decline in the FEV1 after bronchodilator use was similar in the 559 participants in the triamcinolone group and the 557 participants in the placebo group (44.2+/-2.9 vs. 47.0+/-3.0 ml per year, P= 0.50). Members of the triamcinolone group had fewer respiratory symptoms during the course of the study (21.1 per 100 person-years vs. 28.2 per 100 person-years, P=0.005) and had fewer visits to a physician because of a respiratory illness (1.2 per 100 person-years vs. 2.1 per 100 person-years, P=0.03). Those taking triamcinolone also had lower airway reactivity in response to methacholine challenge at 9 months and 33 months (P=0.02 for both comparisons). After three years, the bone density of the lumbar spine and the femur was significantly lower in the triamcinolone group (P < or = 0.007). Inhaled triamcinolone does not slow the rate of decline in lung function in people with COPD, but it improves airway reactivity and respiratory symptoms and decreases the use of health care services for respiratory problems. These benefits should be weighed against the potential long-term adverse effects of triamcinolone on bone mineral density.
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              Unrecognized heart failure in elderly patients with stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

              To establish the prevalence of unrecognized heart failure in elderly patients with a diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, in a stable phase of their disease. In a cross-sectional study, patients >/=65 years of age, classified as having chronic obstructive pulmonary disease by their general practitioner and not known with a cardiologist-confirmed diagnosis of heart failure, were invited to our out-patient clinic. Four hundred and five participants underwent an extensive diagnostic work-up, including medical history and physical examination, followed by chest radiography, electrocardiography, echocardiography, and pulmonary function tests. As reference (i.e. 'gold') standard the consensus opinion of an expert panel was used. The panel based the diagnosis of heart failure on all available results from the diagnostic assessment, guided by the diagnostic principles of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) for heart failure (i.e., symptoms and echocardiographic systolic and/or diastolic dysfunction). The diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease was based on the diagnostic criteria of the Global Initiative (GOLD) for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Of 405 participating patients with a diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, 83 (20.5%, 95% CI 16.7-24.8) had previously unrecognized heart failure (42 patients systolic, 41 'isolated' diastolic, and none right-sided heart failure). In total, 244 (60.2%) patients had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease according to the GOLD criteria and 50 (20.5%, 95% CI 15.6-26.1) patients combined with unrecognized heart failure. Unrecognized heart failure is very common in elderly patients with stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Closer co-operation among general practitioners, pulmonologists, and cardiologists is necessary to improve detection and adequate treatment of heart failure in this large patient population.

                Author and article information

                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Dove Medical Press
                18 November 2014
                : 10
                : 969-976
                [1 ]Department of Pharmacy Practice, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, USA
                [2 ]St John Hospital and Medical Center, Detroit, MI, USA
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Pramodini B Kale-Pradhan, Department of Pharmacy Practice, Wayne State University and St John Hospital and Medical Center, 259 Mack Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201, USA, Tel +1 313 343 3943, Fax +1 313 343 7632, Email pkale@ 123456wayne.edu
                © 2014 Lipari and Kale-Pradhan. This work is published by Dove Medical Press Limited, and licensed under Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License

                The full terms of the License are available at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.



                phosphodiesterase-4 inhibitor, copd, roflumilast


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