Qvar for Asthma Gets a Makeover

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Roni Shye
Roni Shye, PharmD BCGP BCACP, is a licensed pharmacist in the states of Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
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Asthma is a breathing problem in which a person’s airways become inflamed, narrow, and produce extra mucus, which makes it difficult to breathe. Inhaled asthma medications have greatly improved throughout the past decade, and a popular asthma medication Qvar is getting a makeover.    

Qvar will now be available in an easy-to-use device known as Qvar RediHaler.

Will Qvar RediHaler replace Qvar?

Yes. Teva Pharmaceuticals has discontinued sales of the previously available Qvar formulation.

Are there any advantages to the new Qvar RediHaler?

Yes, there are advantages to the new RediHaler, like:

Yes. Qvar RediHaler is the first and only breath-actuated aerosol inhaled corticosteroid in the United States, which means that it waits for you to breathe in before it releases the medicine.

Studies show that correct inhaler technique can reduce the number of asthma attacks. With Qvar RediHaler there is no priming and no canister to press and it’s therefore designed to help eliminate the need for hand-breath coordination.

How is my dose of Qvar RediHaler determined?

The recommended starting dosage of Qvar RediHaler is based on previous asthma therapy and disease severity, including consideration of your current control of asthma symptoms and risk of future exacerbation. Your doctor will determine which strength of Qvar RediHaler is right for you as the recommended starting dosage is typically 40 to 80 mcg twice daily, approximately 12 hours apart.

It may take 3 to 4 weeks after starting Qvar RediHaler to feel the benefits, although some may notice a change in asthma symptoms within 24 hours.

What are the most common side effects associated with Qvar RediHaler?

Side effects include:

Is there anything important a patient should know about Qvar RediHaler?

Yes. The following are some important tips when using Qvar RediHaler:

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How can I save on Qvar RediHaler?

Eligible commercially insured patients may pay as little as $15 per month for Qvar RediHaler. Make sure to read the fine print as maximum reimbursement limits apply and patient out-of-pocket expenses may vary.

For more information on Qvar RediHaler, see the manufacturer site here, or the press release here.

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