"The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has approved mepolizumab (Nucala, GlaxoSmithKline) as an add-on treatment for severe refractory eosinophilic asthma in adults in the 31 European countries covered by the EMA, according to a company state"...
Deterioration Of Asthma and Acute Episodes
ASMANEX HFA is not indicated for the relief of acute symptoms, i.e., as rescue therapy for the treatment of acute episodes of bronchospasm. An inhaled, short-acting beta2-agonist, not ASMANEX HFA, should be used to relieve acute symptoms such as shortness of breath. When prescribing ASMANEX HFA, the physician must also provide the patient with an inhaled, short-acting beta2-agonist (e.g., albuterol) for treatment of acute symptoms, despite regular twice-daily (morning and evening) use of ASMANEX HFA. Instruct patients to contact their physician immediately if episodes of asthma that are not responsive to bronchodilators occur during the course of treatment with ASMANEX HFA. During such episodes, patients may require therapy with oral corticosteroids.
In clinical trials, the development of localized infections of the mouth and pharynx with Candida albicans have occurred in patients treated with ASMANEX HFA. If oropharyngeal candidiasis develops, it should be treated with appropriate local or systemic (i.e., oral) antifungal therapy while remaining on treatment with ASMANEX HFA therapy, but at times therapy with ASMANEX HFA may need to be interrupted. Advise patients to rinse the mouth after inhalation of ASMANEX HFA.
Persons who are using drugs that suppress the immune system are more susceptible to infections than healthy individuals.
Chickenpox and measles, for example, can have a more serious or even fatal course in susceptible children or adults using corticosteroids. In such children or adults who have not had these diseases or who are not properly immunized, particular care should be taken to avoid exposure. How the dose, route, and duration of corticosteroid administration affect the risk of developing a disseminated infection is not known. The contribution of the underlying disease and/or prior corticosteroid treatment to the risk is also not known. If exposed to chickenpox, prophylaxis with varicella zoster immune globulin (VZIG) or pooled intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) may be indicated. If exposed to measles, prophylaxis with pooled intramuscular immunoglobulin (IG) may be indicated. (See the respective package inserts for complete VZIG and IG prescribing information.) If chickenpox develops, treatment with antiviral agents may be considered.
Inhaled corticosteroids should be used with caution, if at all, in patients with active or quiescent tuberculosis infection of the respiratory tract, untreated systemic fungal, bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections; or ocular herpes simplex.
Transferring Patients From Systemic Corticosteroid Therapy
Particular care is needed for patients who are transferred from systemically active corticosteroids to ASMANEX HFA because deaths due to adrenal insufficiency have occurred in asthmatic patients during and after transfer from systemic corticosteroids to less systemically available inhaled corticosteroids. After withdrawal from systemic corticosteroids, a number of months are required for recovery of hypothalamicpituitary- adrenal (HPA) function.
Patients who have been previously maintained on 20 mg or more per day of prednisone (or its equivalent) may be most susceptible, particularly when their systemic corticosteroids have been almost completely withdrawn. During this period of HPA suppression, patients may exhibit signs and symptoms of adrenal insufficiency when exposed to trauma, surgery, or infection (particularly gastroenteritis) or other conditions associated with severe electrolyte loss. Although ASMANEX HFA may improve control of asthma symptoms during these episodes, in recommended doses it supplies less than normal physiological amounts of corticosteroid systemically and does NOT provide the mineralocorticoid activity necessary for coping with these emergencies.
During periods of stress or severe asthma attack, patients who have been withdrawn from systemic corticosteroids should be instructed to resume oral corticosteroids (in large doses) immediately and to contact their physicians for further instruction. These patients should also be instructed to carry a medical identification card indicating that they may need supplementary systemic corticosteroids during periods of stress or severe asthma attack.
Patients requiring oral or other systemic corticosteroids should be weaned slowly from oral or other systemic corticosteroid use after transferring to ASMANEX HFA. Lung function (FEV1 or PEF), betaagonist use, and asthma symptoms should be carefully monitored during withdrawal of oral or other systemic corticosteroids. In addition to monitoring asthma signs and symptoms, patients should be observed for signs and symptoms of adrenal insufficiency such as fatigue, lassitude, weakness, nausea and vomiting, and hypotension.
Transfer of patients from systemic corticosteroid therapy to ASMANEX HFA may unmask allergic conditions previously suppressed by the systemic corticosteroid therapy, e.g., rhinitis, conjunctivitis, eczema, arthritis, and eosinophilic conditions.
During withdrawal from oral corticosteroids, some patients may experience symptoms of systemically active corticosteroid withdrawal, e.g., joint and/or muscular pain, lassitude, and depression, despite maintenance or even improvement of respiratory function.
Hypercorticism And Adrenal Suppression
ASMANEX HFA will often help control asthma symptoms with less suppression of HPA function than therapeutically equivalent oral doses of prednisone. Since mometasone furoate is absorbed into the circulation and can be systemically active at higher doses, the beneficial effects of ASMANEX HFA in minimizing HPA dysfunction may be expected only when recommended dosages are not exceeded and individual patients are titrated to the lowest effective dose.
Because of the possibility of systemic absorption of inhaled corticosteroids, patients treated with ASMANEX HFA should be observed carefully for any evidence of systemic corticosteroid effects. Particular care should be taken in observing patients postoperatively or during periods of stress for evidence of inadequate adrenal response.
It is possible that systemic corticosteroid effects such as hypercorticism and adrenal suppression (including adrenal crisis) may appear in a small number of patients, particularly when mometasone furoate is administered at higher than recommended doses over prolonged periods of time. If such effects occur, the dosage of ASMANEX HFA should be reduced slowly, consistent with accepted procedures for reducing systemic corticosteroids and for management of asthma symptoms.
Drug Interactions With Strong Cytochrome P450 3A4 Inhibitors
Caution should be exercised when considering the coadministration of ASMANEX HFA with ketoconazole, and other known strong cytochrome P450 (CYP) isoenzyme 3A4 (CYP3A4) inhibitors (e.g., ritonavir, atazanavir, clarithromycin, indinavir, itraconazole, nefazodone, nelfinavir, saquinavir, telithromycin) because adverse effects related to increased systemic exposure to mometasone furoate may occur [see DRUG INTERACTIONS and CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
Paradoxical Bronchospasm And Upper Airway Symptoms
ASMANEX HFA may produce inhalation induced bronchospasm with an immediate increase in wheezing after dosing that may be life-threatening. If inhalation induced bronchospasm occurs, it should be treated immediately with an inhaled, short-acting bronchodilator. ASMANEX HFA should be discontinued immediately and alternative therapy instituted.
Hypersensitivity Reactions Including Anaphylaxis
Hypersensitivity reactions such as urticaria, flushing, allergic dermatitis, and bronchospasm, may occur after administration of ASMANEX HFA. Discontinue ASMANEX HFA if such reactions occur [see CONTRAINDICATIONS].
The following additional hypersensitivity reactions, such as rash, pruritus, angioedema, and anaphylactic reaction, have been reported after administration of mometasone furoate dry powder inhaler [see ADVERSE REACTIONS].
Reduction In Bone Mineral Density
Decreases in bone mineral density (BMD) have been observed with long-term administration of products containing inhaled corticosteroids, including mometasone furoate. The clinical significance of small changes in BMD with regard to long-term outcomes, such as fracture, is unknown. Patients with major risk factors for decreased bone mineral content, such as prolonged immobilization, family history of osteoporosis, or chronic use of drugs that can reduce bone mass (e.g., anticonvulsants and corticosteroids) should be monitored and treated with established standards of care.
In a 2-year double-blind study in 103 male and female asthma patients 18 to 50 years of age previously maintained on bronchodilator therapy (Baseline FEV1 85%-88% predicted), treatment with mometasone furoate dry powder inhaler 200 mcg twice daily resulted in significant reductions in lumbar spine (LS) BMD at the end of the treatment period compared to placebo. The mean change from Baseline to Endpoint in the lumbar spine BMD was -0.015 (-1.43%) for the mometasone furoate dry powder inhaler group compared to 0.002 (0.25%) for the placebo group. In another 2-year double-blind study in 87 male and female asthma patients 18 to 50 years of age previously maintained on bronchodilator therapy (Baseline FEV1 82%-83% predicted), treatment with mometasone furoate dry powder inhaler 400 mcg twice daily demonstrated no statistically significant changes in lumbar spine BMD at the end of the treatment period compared to placebo. The mean change from Baseline to Endpoint in the lumbar spine BMD was -0.018 (-1.57%) for the mometasone furoate group compared to -0.006 (-0.43%) for the placebo group.
Effect On Growth
Orally inhaled corticosteroids, including ASMANEX HFA, may cause a reduction in growth velocity when administered to pediatric patients. Monitor the growth of pediatric patients receiving ASMANEX HFA routinely (e.g., via stadiometry). To minimize the systemic effects of orally inhaled corticosteroids, including ASMANEX HFA, titrate each patient's dose to the lowest dosage that effectively controls his/her symptoms [see Use in Specific Populations].
Glaucoma And Cataracts
Glaucoma, increased intraocular pressure, and cataracts have been reported following the use of long-term administration of inhaled corticosteroids, including mometasone furoate. Therefore, close monitoring is warranted in patients with a change in vision or with a history of increased intraocular pressure, glaucoma, and/or cataracts [see ADVERSE REACTIONS].
Patient Counseling Information
Advise the patient to read the FDA-approved patient labeling (PATIENT INFORMATION and Instructions for Use).
Not for Acute Symptoms
Advise patients that ASMANEX HFA is not indicated to relieve acute asthma symptoms, and extra doses should not be used for that purpose. ASMANEX HFA is not a bronchodilator and should not be used to treat status asthmaticus or to relieve acute asthma symptoms. Acute asthma symptoms should be treated with an inhaled, short-acting beta2-agonist such as albuterol. Prescribe the patient with such medication and instruct the patient in how it should be used [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]. Instruct patients to seek medical attention immediately if they experience any of the following:
- If their symptoms worsen
- Significant decrease in lung function as outlined by the physician
- If they need more inhalations of a short-acting beta2-agonist than usual
Advise patients not to increase the dose or frequency of ASMANEX HFA. The daily dosage of ASMANEX HFA should not exceed two inhalations twice daily. If they miss a dose, instruct patients to take their next dose at the same time they normally do.
Advise patients not to stop or reduce ASMANEX HFA therapy without physician/provider guidance since symptoms may recur after discontinuation.
Advise patients that localized infections with Candida albicans occurred in the mouth and pharynx in some patients. If oropharyngeal candidiasis develops, it should be treated with appropriate local or systemic (i.e., oral) antifungal therapy while still continuing with ASMANEX HFA therapy, but at times therapy with ASMANEX HFA may need to be temporarily interrupted under close medical supervision. Advise patients to rinse the mouth after inhalation of ASMANEX HFA [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
Warn patients who are on immunosuppressant doses of corticosteroids to avoid exposure to chickenpox or measles and, if exposed, to consult their physician without delay. Inform patients of potential worsening of existing tuberculosis, fungal, bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections, or ocular herpes simplex [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
Hypercorticism and Adrenal Suppression
Advise patients that ASMANEX HFA may cause systemic corticosteroid effects of hypercorticism and adrenal suppression. Additionally, instruct patients that deaths due to adrenal insufficiency have occurred during and after transfer from systemic corticosteroids. Patients should taper slowly from systemic corticosteroids if transferring to ASMANEX HFA [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
Reduction in Bone Mineral Density
Advise patients who are at an increased risk for decreased BMD that the use of corticosteroids may pose an additional risk and should be monitored and, where appropriate, be treated for this condition [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
Reduced Growth Velocity
Inform patients that orally inhaled corticosteroids, including ASMANEX HFA, may cause a reduction in growth velocity when administered to pediatric patients. Physicians should closely follow the growth of pediatric patients taking corticosteroids by any route [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
Glaucoma and Cataracts
Advise patients that long-term use of inhaled corticosteroids may increase the risk of some eye problems (glaucoma or cataracts); regular eye examinations should be considered [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
Hypersensitivity Reactions Including Anaphylaxis
Advise patients that hypersensitivity reactions, such as urticaria, flushing, allergic dermatitis, bronchospasm, rash, pruritus, angioedema, and anaphylactic reaction, may occur after administration of ASMANEX HFA. Instruct patients to discontinue ASMANEX HFA if such reactions occur [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
Use Daily for Best Effect
Advise patients to use ASMANEX HFA at regular intervals, since its effectiveness depends on regular use. Maximum benefit may not be achieved for 1 week or longer after starting treatment. If symptoms do not improve after 2 weeks of therapy or if the condition worsens, instruct patients to contact their physician.
Instructions for Use
Instruct patients regarding the following:
- Read the PATIENT INFORMATION before use and follow the Instructions for Use carefully.
- Remind patients to:
- Remove the cap from the mouthpiece of the actuator before use.
- Not remove the canister from the actuator.
- Not wash inhaler in water. The mouthpiece should be cleaned using a dry wipe after every 7 days of use.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment Of Fertility
In a 2-year carcinogenicity study in Sprague Dawley rats, mometasone furoate demonstrated no statistically significant increase in the incidence of tumors at inhalation doses up to 67 mcg/kg (approximately 14 times the MRHD on an AUC basis). In a 19-month carcinogenicity study in Swiss CD-1 mice, mometasone furoate demonstrated no statistically significant increase in the incidence of tumors at inhalation doses up to 160 mcg/kg (approximately 9 times the MRHD on an AUC basis).
Mometasone furoate increased chromosomal aberrations in an in vitro Chinese hamster ovary cell assay, but did not have this effect in an in vitro Chinese hamster lung cell assay. Mometasone furoate was not mutagenic in the Ames test or mouse lymphoma assay, and was not clastogenic in an in vivo mouse micronucleus assay, a rat bone marrow chromosomal aberration assay, or a mouse male germcell chromosomal aberration assay. Mometasone furoate also did not induce unscheduled DNA synthesis in vivo in rat hepatocytes.
In reproductive studies in rats, impairment of fertility was not produced by subcutaneous doses up to 15 mcg/kg (approximately 8 times the MRHD on an AUC basis).
Use In Specific Populations
Pregnancy Category C
There are no adequate and well-controlled studies of ASMANEX HFA in pregnant women. Animal reproduction studies of mometasone furoate in mice, rats, and rabbits revealed evidence of teratogenicity. Because animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response, ASMANEX HFA should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.
When administered to pregnant mice, rats, and rabbits, mometasone furoate increased fetal malformations and decreased fetal growth (measured by lower fetal weights and/or delayed ossification). Dystocia and related complications were also observed when mometasone furoate was administered to rats late in gestation. However, experience with oral corticosteroids suggests that rodents are more prone to teratogenic effects from corticosteroid exposure than humans.
In a mouse reproduction study, subcutaneous mometasone furoate produced cleft palate at approximately one-third of the maximum recommended daily human dose (MRHD) on a mcg/m² basis and decreased fetal survival at approximately 1 times the MRHD. No toxicity was observed at approximately one-tenth of the MRHD on a mcg/m² basis.
In a rat reproduction study, mometasone furoate produced umbilical hernia at topical dermal doses approximately 6 times the MRHD on a mcg/m² basis and delays in ossification at approximately 3 times the MRHD on a mcg/m² basis.
In another study, rats received subcutaneous doses of mometasone furoate throughout pregnancy or late in gestation. Treated animals had prolonged and difficult labor, fewer live births, lower birth weight, and reduced early pup survival at a dose that was approximately 8 times the MRHD on an area under the curve (AUC) basis. Similar effects were not observed at approximately 4 times MRHD on an AUC basis.
In rabbits, mometasone furoate caused multiple malformations (e.g., flexed front paws, gallbladder agenesis, umbilical hernia, hydrocephaly) at topical dermal doses approximately 3 times the MRHD on a mcg/m² basis. In an oral study, mometasone furoate increased resorptions and caused cleft palate and/or head malformations (hydrocephaly and domed head) at a dose less than the MRHD based on AUC. At a dose approximately 2 times the MRHD based on AUC, most litters were aborted or resorbed [see Nonclinical Toxicology].
Hypoadrenalism may occur in infants born to women receiving corticosteroids during pregnancy. Infants born to mothers taking substantial corticosteroid doses during pregnancy should be monitored for signs of hypoadrenalism.
Labor And Delivery
There are no adequate and well-controlled human studies that have studied the effects of ASMANEX HFA during labor and delivery.
It is not known whether ASMANEX HFA is excreted in human milk. Because other corticosteroids are excreted in human milk, caution should be exercised when ASMANEX HFA is administered to a nursing woman.
Since there are no data from well-controlled human studies on the use of ASMANEX HFA on nursing mothers, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue ASMANEX HFA, taking into account the importance of ASMANEX HFA to the mother.
The safety and effectiveness of ASMANEX HFA have been established in patients 12 years of age and older in 2 clinical trials of 12 and 26 weeks in duration. In the 2 clinical trials, 32 patients 12 to 17 years of age were treated with ASMANEX HFA. No overall differences in effectiveness were observed between patients in this age group compared to those observed in patients 18 years of age and older. There were no obvious differences in the type or frequency of adverse drug reactions reported in this age group compared to patients 18 years of age and older. The safety and efficacy of ASMANEX HFA have not been established in children less than 12 years of age.
Controlled clinical studies have shown that inhaled corticosteroids may cause a reduction in growth velocity in pediatric patients. In these studies, the mean reduction in growth velocity was approximately 1 cm per year (range 0.3 to 1.8 per year) and appears to depend upon dose and duration of exposure. This effect was observed in the absence of laboratory evidence of HPA axis suppression, suggesting that growth velocity is a more sensitive indicator of systemic corticosteroid exposure in pediatric patients than some commonly used tests of HPA axis function. The long-term effects of this reduction in growth velocity associated with orally inhaled corticosteroids, including the impact on final adult height, are unknown. The potential for “catch-up” growth following discontinuation of treatment with orally inhaled corticosteroids has not been adequately studied.
The growth of children and adolescents receiving orally inhaled corticosteroids, including ASMANEX HFA, should be monitored routinely (e.g., via stadiometry). If a child or adolescent on any corticosteroid appears to have growth suppression, the possibility that he/she is particularly sensitive to this effect should be considered. The potential growth effects of prolonged treatment should be weighed against clinical benefits obtained and the risks associated with alternative therapies. To minimize the systemic effects of orally inhaled corticosteroids, including ASMANEX HFA, each patient should be titrated to his/her lowest effective dose [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION].
A total of 38 patients 65 years of age and older (3 of whom were 75 years and older) have been treated with ASMANEX HFA in 2 clinical trials of 12 and 26 weeks in duration. No overall differences in safety or effectiveness were observed between these patients and younger patients, but greater sensitivity of some older individuals cannot be ruled out. Based on available data for ASMANEX HFA, no adjustment of dosage in geriatric patients is warranted.
Concentrations of mometasone furoate appear to increase with severity of hepatic impairment [see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Last reviewed on RxList: 9/21/2015
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