Ann Pharmacother. 2021 Aug 12:10600280211038353. doi: 10.1177/10600280211038353. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVE: To review current evidence on the use of a fixed-dose combination (FDC) of budesonide/glycopyrrolate/formoterol fumarate (BGFF) triple therapy delivered via metered dose inhaler (MDI) in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and offer clinical practice insights.
DATA SOURCES: We used PubMed to conduct the literature search from 1946 through June 30, 2021, using budesonide, glycopyrrolate or glycopyrronium, and formoterol.
STUDY SELECTION AND EXTRACTION: We included clinical trials in patients with COPD along with pharmacokinetic or pharmacodynamic studies.
DATA SYNTHESIS: In all, 19 citations were included. BGFF MDI reduces the risk of exacerbations regardless of exacerbation history compared with dual bronchodilators or inhaled corticosteroid/long-acting β-agonist. Rescue inhaler use decreased, and patient-reported outcomes of symptoms and well-being improved with triple therapy. Mortality was decreased with the higher-dose BGFF MDI in comparison to dual bronchodilator therapy. Dysphonia and candidiasis were more common with BGFF MDI compared with dual bronchodilators, as was pneumonia.
RELEVANCE TO PATIENT CARE AND CLINICAL PRACTICE: BGFF MDI is the second FDC triple therapy approved for COPD treatment. BGFF MDI improves important patient outcomes in COPD, including exacerbation risk. The unique co-suspension technology allows delivery of 3 active ingredients in 1 inhaler, a potential benefit to overcome adherence and technique-related barriers. These benefits must be gently weighed against the increased risk of pneumonia.
CONCLUSION: The findings from phase 3 trials support the efficacy and safety of triple therapy in COPD. Future studies are needed to confirm potential mortality benefit and the role of triple therapy in patients without an exacerbation history.