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      Evaluation of rescue medication use and medication adherence receiving umeclidinium/vilanterol versus tiotropium bromide/olodaterol

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          This was the first real-world head-to-head study comparing inhaled long-acting muscarinic antagonist/long-acting β 2-agonist fixed-dose combination treatments as maintenance therapy.


          Retrospective observational study including commercial, Medicare Advantage with Part D or Part D-only enrollees aged ≥40 years from the Optum Research Database. Patients initiated umeclidinium/vilanterol (UMEC/VI) or tiotropium bromide/olodaterol (TIO/OLO) between June 1, 2015 and November 30, 2016 (index date) with 12 months of pre- and post-index continuous enrollment. Outcomes were modeled following the inverse probability of treatment weighting. The primary endpoint, rescue medication use, was modeled using weighted ordinary least squares regression with bootstrapped variance estimation. Intent-to-treat analysis evaluated non-inferiority and superiority of UMEC/VI to TIO/OLO with thresholds of 0.30 and 0 units, respectively. On-treatment sensitivity analysis evaluated the superiority of UMEC/VI to TIO/OLO for rescue medication use. The secondary endpoint, medication adherence (proportion of days covered [PDC]≥80%), was evaluated using weighted logistic regression. Post hoc weighted Cox proportional hazards regression analysis evaluated escalation to multiple inhaler triple therapy (MITT).


          The study population included 14,324 patients; 9549 initiated UMEC/VI and 4775 initiated TIO/OLO. During the 12-month post-index period, UMEC/VI initiators used 0.16 fewer adjusted mean units of rescue medication than TIO/OLO initiators (95% CI: −0.28, −0.04), meeting pre-specified non-inferiority ( P<0.001) and superiority ( P=0.005) criteria; the on-treatment sensitivity analysis for superiority was not statistically significant. Significantly more UMEC/VI than TIO/OLO initiators (28.6% vs 22.7%; P<0.001) achieved a clinically meaningful level (PDC≥80%) of medication adherence. The adjusted risk of escalation to MITT was similar between treatment groups (HR=0.93; 95% CI: 0.81, 1.06; P=0.268).


          UMEC/VI was superior to TIO/OLO for rescue medication use and UMEC/VI initiators had better medication adherence than TIO/OLO initiators. This study supports findings from a head-to-head trial that demonstrated significant, clinically meaningful improvements in lung function with UMEC/VI versus TIO/OLO.

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          Adherence to inhaled therapies, health outcomes and costs in patients with asthma and COPD.

          Suboptimal adherence to pharmacological treatment of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has adverse effects on disease control and treatment costs. The reasons behind non-adherence revolve around patient knowledge/education, inhaler device convenience and satisfaction, age, adverse effects and medication costs. Age is of particular concern given the increasing prevalence of asthma in the young and increased rates of non-adherence in adolescents compared with children and adults. The correlation between adherence to inhaled pharmacological therapies for asthma and COPD and clinical efficacy is positive, with improved symptom control and lung function shown in most studies of adults, adolescents and children. Satisfaction with inhaler devices is also positively correlated with improved adherence and clinical outcomes, and reduced costs. Reductions in healthcare utilisation are consistently observed with good adherence; however, costs associated with general healthcare and lost productivity tend to be offset only in more adherent patients with severe disease, versus those with milder forms of asthma or COPD. Non-adherence is associated with higher healthcare utilisation and costs, and reductions in health-related quality of life, and remains problematic on an individual, societal and economic level. Further development of measures to improve adherence is needed to fully address these issues. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
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            COPD: adherence to therapy

            Adherence to medical therapies is a growing issue, so much so that the World Health Organization defined it as “a new pharmacological problem”. The main factors affecting compliance are: frequency of administration, rapid onset of action, role of device. The most severe consequence of non-adherence is the increased risk of poor clinical outcome, associated with worsening of the quality of life and increase in health-care expenditure. It appears crucial to identify those COPD patients who are “poorly or not at all compliant with their treatment”. In order to evaluate adherence to the medical therapy, several methods were proposed, the most effective of which turned out to be self-reports, i.e. simple, brief questionnaires (e.g. Morisky test). To increase the likelihood of quickly identifying non-compliant patients, it may be useful to administer a simple questionnaire to naïve subjects (for example, in the waiting room before an examination) including six specific items allowing to identify the patient’s key characteristics. Depending on the answers, patients who do not comply with their pharmacological treatment may be classified as belonging to 6 phenotypes. For patients who are already under treatment it might be useful to administer another short questionnaire during follow up examination. Once the risk of non-compliance is identified, four possible types of measures can be taken: prescription-related, educational, behavioral and complex combined measures (combination of two or more actions). Therefore, while it is clear that adherence in COPD is a critical issue, it is also obvious that raising awareness on the disease and improving cooperation among specialists, general practitioners, health-care professionals, and patients is the starting point at which this evolution should immediately begin. Each medication is able to foster good compliance with the therapy, and consequently to maximize the efficacy, by virtue of its specific inhaler and its own active ingredient. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/2049-6958-9-60) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
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              Association of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease maintenance medication adherence with all-cause hospitalization and spending in a Medicare population.

              Although maintenance medications are a cornerstone of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) management, adherence remains suboptimal. Poor medication adherence is implicated in poor outcomes with other chronic conditions; however, little is understood regarding links between adherence and outcomes in COPD patients.

                Author and article information

                Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis
                Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis
                International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
                04 September 2019
                : 14
                : 2047-2060
                [1 ]Glaxo Smith Kline, Research Triangle Park , Durham, NC, USA
                [2 ]Optum, Eden Prairie , MN, USA
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Chad MoretzGlaxoSmithKline, Research Triangle Park , 5 Moore Drive, Durham, NC, USATel +1 828 442 6294Email
                © 2019 Moretz et al.

                This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms (

                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 2, References: 17, Pages: 14
                Original Research


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