Gender differences in the incidence, susceptibility and severity of many obstructive airway diseases (OADs) have been well recognized. However, gender differences in the inhaled pharmacotherapy profile are not well characterized.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study to investigate gender differences in new-users of inhaled corticosteroids (ICS), short-or long-acting beta 2-agonist (SABA or LABA), ICS/LABA, short-or long-acting muscarinic antagonist (SAMA or LAMA) among patients with asthma, COPD or asthma-COPD overlap (ACO). We used Clinical Practice Research Datalink to identify OAD patients, 18 years and older, who were new-users (1-year washout period) from 01-January-1998 to 31-July-2018. Multivariable logistic regression was used to examine gender differences in each of the inhaled pharmacotherapies after controlling for potential confounders.
A total of 242,079 new-users (asthma: 84.93%; COPD: 10.19%; ACO: 4.88%) of inhaled pharmacotherapies were identified. The multivariable analyses showed that males with COPD were more likely to be a new user of a LABA (odds ratio [OR] 1.29; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.12–1.49), LAMA (OR 1.21; 95% CI 1.10–1.33), SAMA (OR 1.11; 95% CI 1.01–1.21) and less likely to be a new user of a SABA (OR 0.84; 95% CI, 0.80–0.89) compared to females. Similar patterns were also observed for patients with ACO; males were more likely to be prescribed with LABA (OR 1.26; 95% CI 1.03–1.55), LAMA (OR 1.28; 95% CI 1.11–1.48), SAMA (OR 1.28; 95% CI 1.11–1.48), and less likely to be a new user of a SABA (OR 0.89; 95% CI, 0.82–0.96). Also, males with asthma were more likely to be a new-user of ICS/LABA (OR 1.15; 95% CI, 1.08–1.23) and less likely to start an ICS (OR 0.97; 95% CI, 0.95–0.99) in comparison with females.