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Asthma inhaler discontinued

By Lilian Anekwe

GPs are being advised to review their asthma patients' prescriptions after drug firm Teva said the inhaler Beclazone would no longer be available.

The company wrote to all GPs and healthcare professionals to inform them that its beclometasone dipropionate pressurised metered dose inhalers would be discontinued from 31 March 2010, as part of an ongoing ‘attempt to phase out the manufacture of all CFC-containing beclometasone products.'

The discontinued products are Beclazone 50, 100, 200 and 250mcg. However the Qvar, Salamol and Airomir products, which are also manufactured by Teva, remain unaffected.

Dr Mike Thomas, a GP with a special interest in asthma in Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire, said: 'If GPs have not already switched patients who are on a CFC-containing product they will need to take action now, and select carefully when switching drugs as other inhalers may not necessarily be a like-for-like switch.'

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