NPS RADAR August 2007

Title Why read this
Budesonide with eformoterol dry powder inhaler (Symbicort Turbuhaler) maintenance and reliever regimen for asthma Reviews extended PBS listing for budesonide/eformoterol combination inhaler as an on-demand alternative to regular combination or corticosteroid therapy for asthma.
Fluticasone propionate with salmeterol xinafoate (Seretide) for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease The PBS listing of fluticasone with salmeterol has been extended to include patients with moderate to severe COPD with symptoms that are poorly controlled despite regular beta2 agonist treatment.
Quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccine (Gardasil) Reviews use of human papillomavirus vaccine for prevention of HPV-related cervical cancer, including immunisation program for adolescents and young women.
Rotavirus vaccines (Rotarix and RotaTeq) for prevention of rotavirus gastroenteritis Reviews use of oral rotavirus vaccines for prevention of rotavirus gastroenteritis in infants and children, including immunisation schedule, adverse effects, and contraindications.
Strontium ranelate (Protos) for postmenopausal osteoporosis Reviews use of strontium ranelate for postmenopausal osteoporosis, with emphasis on reducing risk of fracture.
Atomoxetine (Strattera) for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder Reviews use of atomoxetine for ADHD in children, adolescents, and adults, and compares atomoxetine with methylphenidate, dexamphetamine, and other psychostimulants.
Olmesartan medoxomil (Olmetec) monotherapy or in combination with hydrochlorothiazide (Olmetec Plus) for hypertension Reviews use of olmesartan monotherapy or in combination with hydrochlorothiazide for hypertension, including indications for use, drug interactions, and patient monitoring.
Brief item: Risedronate sodium (Actonel) and risedronate sodium with calcium carbonate (Actonel Combi) listing for osteoporosis in patients at high risk of fracture The PBS restriction for risedronate was extended o allow the treatment of osteoporosis among patients aged 70 years or older with low bone mineral density scores but without an existing minimal trauma fracture.
Brief item: Levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device (Mirena) now PBS listed for idiopathic menorrhagia The restricted PBS listing for levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device (Mirena) was extended to include women in whom oral therapies for idiopathic menorrhagia are ineffective or contraindicated.
Brief item: Be aware of dose ranges for new ramipril with felodipine combination (Triasyn) (see erratum below) A new fixed-dose combination preparation of ramipril with felodipine (Triasyn) was PBS listed with a restricted dose range and dose titration cautions.
Brief item: Perindopril arginine with indapamide hemihydrate (Coversyl Plus) Perindopril arginine with indapamide (Coversyl Plus) was PBS listed after a formulation change from perindopril erbumine to perindopril arginine.
Brief item: Alternative hydroxocobalamin product PBS listed Hydroxocobalamin (Goldshield Hydroxocobalamin) has been temporarily PBS listed to provide an alternative to the currently listed product (Neo-Cytamen) while it is in short supply.
Brief item: Cholinesterase inhibitors: change in authority requirements for cognitive testing A change in the authority requirements for the cholinesterase inhibitors means that the same cognitive test used in the initial treatment authority application must be used in requests for continued treatment.
Brief item: Benzhexol hydrochloride misuse Prescribers are reminded that benzhexol hydrochloride, an anticholinergic used in the treatment of Parkinson's disease and drug-induced extrapyramidal disorders, is a potential drug of abuse and that overdoses can be fatal.
Brief item: Rosiglitazone and cardiovascular risk — NPS fact sheet NPS has released a fact sheet discussing a recent meta-analysis that has raised concerns about a potential increase in cardiovascular risk among patients treated with rosiglitazone.
NPS RADAR August 2007 NPS RADAR articles provide timely, independent, evidence-based assessment of new drugs, new PBS listings and research for health professionals.