Advair is a trade name of a branded prescription medicine manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline pharmaceutical company and used to treat the symptoms of asthma and/or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Advair can be used alone or in a combination with other medications.
This medicine contains two active ingredients: Salmeterol and Fluticasone. The pharmacological group of this combination of active substances is defined as either beta-agonists in combination, or as sympathomimetics in combination with corticosteroids or other drugs, excluding anticholinergics. The drug has a bronchodilator, anti-asthma and anti-inflammatory pharmacological effect.
For optimal effect, Advair should be used regularly, even in the absence of clinical symptoms of asthma and COPD. Determining the duration of the course of therapy and changing the dose of the drug is possible only on the recommendation of a doctor. This medicine does not apply to those used as a life-saving remedy for an attack of bronchial asthma.
If a patient fails to achieve adequate disease control with monotherapy with inhaled corticosteroids, switching to combination therapy with salmeterol and fluticasone at an equivalent dose of a corticosteroid may lead to improved control of bronchial asthma. For those patients in whom inhaled corticosteroid monotherapy provides adequate control of bronchial asthma, switching to inhaled therapy with a combination of salmeterol with fluticasone propionate may allow a reduction in the dose of corticosteroid without loss of control of bronchial asthma.
Branded Advair is produced in two forms of release: Advair HFA and Advair Diskus. The first option is a classic metered dose inhaler that contains HFA propellant (hydrofluoroalkane propellant). It works like a balloon. The patient presses on the inhaler, it sprays the medicine, and the patient inhales it. The second option looks more unusual. It is a disc-shaped device that contains the active ingredients Salmeterol and Fluticasone in powder form for inhalation. Generic Advair is also available in these two drug formulations. The fundamental difference between them, therefore, lies in the form of the active substance: aerosol or powder. It is up to your doctor to determine what is best for you. However, some patients themselves eventually come to the idea of changing one or another form of Advair release to a more convenient one for them.
Like most other asthma medications, Advair didn’t have any generics for a long time. At first, this was due to the current patent of GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturer of the branded drug, for the trade name and the medicinal formula of this drug itself, but even after the patent expired, major players in the pharmaceutical market obstructed the approval of generics of this drug. In 2017, Indian pharmaceutical company Mylan was awaiting a full response letter (CRL) from the FDA in connection with a registration application for Advair Diskus (fluticasone/salmeterol), a generic drug of Advair, according to FirstWord Pharma. Mylan’s application for Advair Diskus generic was initially accepted by the FDA in 2016, but U.S. regulators refused to approve the generic. However, in 2017, the second attempt by Mylan was also unsuccessful, and no explanation was given from the manufacturer about this.
Management at GSK predicted that by 2018 it would have been possible to avoid competition from Advair generics. This prediction was made after the FDA sent a CRL to Novartis in connection with a generic application for said originator drug. In March 2018, the FDA also confirmed an earlier decision to reject the application of the Jordanian pharmaceutical company Hikma Pharmaceuticals for registration of another generic Advair. The company was required to conduct an additional clinical study.
In early 2018, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries launched the AirDuo RespiClick anti-asthma inhaler (AirDuo RespiClick, salmeterol + fluticasone), as well as its authorized generic version, which is 70-80% cheaper than the original. However, the generic differed from the original in two ways: it contained a lower dose of salmeterol (14 vs. 50 micrograms) and was intended for the treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) rather than asthma. A lower dose of salmeterol means a reduction in systemic exposure to this selective long-acting A2-adrenergic agonist, which is supposed to significantly reduce the risk of fatal asthma attacks and adverse side effects.
Finally, generic versions of both Advair Diskus and Advair HFA from the Indian pharmaceutical company Cipla became available to consumers in 2020. The products of this company even received FDA approval. According to statistics, sales of Advair and its generics in the United States in 2021 amounted to about $2.9 billion.
In line with Cipla's previously announced management goals, the company intends to become a global leader in lung-related medicines, and Advair generics are part of Cipla's Breath Without Borders program.
Advair Diskus Generic
To use Advair Diskus generic, it is necessary, holding the disk horizontally, first to turn the side of the disk, opening the hole in it, then move the lever that is responsible for dispensing the dose from the disk. You should hear a click. The patient should exhale deeply (not into the opening of the disc!), then put their lips to the opening of the disc and take a deep breath through the mouth. After that, you need to take the disk away from your mouth and hold your breath for about 10 seconds, then exhale slowly. Remember to close the disc after use. The lever will return to its original position automatically. It should be borne in mind that it is absolutely prohibited to play with the lever, moving it from one position to another unnecessarily, as this leads to the delivery of the next dose of medicine. Close the disc when not in use. Keep your inhaler dry. Don’t blow into it.
The powder preparation is contained in a foil blister pack inside the Diskus inhaler. Advair Diskus pokes a hole in each blister one at a time when you press the lever. After inhalation, it is recommended to rinse your mouth with water to reduce the likelihood of candidal lesions of the mucous membranes.
Advair HFA Generic
Advair HFA delivers active ingredients via a metered dose inhaler. A metered dose inhaler is placed on top of a medicine bottle and turns the medicine (liquid) into a spray that is taken into the lungs when you take a deep breath through your mouth. Your doctor may advise you to use a spacer, which is a tube inserted into the inhaler that makes the inhaler easier to use. This is especially true for children (Advair is approved for use in children from 4 years old). Your doctor should show you how to use the inhaler and, if necessary, the spacer.
Shake the inhaler well before each use. Avoid getting the drug in the eyes.
- Prepare the inhaler before you use it for the first time.
- Shake it well, then spray the contents into the air, and away from the face.
- Shake and spray a total of 4 times. If the inhaler has been dropped or has not been used for more than 4 weeks, make two sprays into the air before use.
- Before inhaling the drug through the inhaler, exhale deeply, trying to expel as much air from the lungs as possible.
- Bring the mouthpiece to your mouth, holding the vial vertically.
- Open your mouth and take a slow and deep breath as if you are yawning.
- Simultaneously press firmly once on the top of the vial.
- Hold your breath for about 5 to 10 seconds and exhale slowly.
- If you need to take several breaths through the inhaler, wait 1 to 2 minutes before taking the second breath.
These instructions apply equally to the original drug and to any of its generics.
Generic Advair Cost
Buying Generic Advair means saving more than a significant amount of money, especially since this medicine requires constant use. About one out of 12 people in the US have asthma. It’s even more common in some states like Wisconsin. It is quite a common situation when people use not Advair, but some other inhaler that offers only temporary relief, because it is cheaper. And with it, they are not able to do the activities they enjoy, like running and exercising. They can’t afford other asthma inhalers, even though they are the ones that could control his condition. So it is great news that there is finally a generic medication for Advair that is much less expensive. The branded drug usually costs between $400 and $550 per prescription. In comparison, generic Advair inhaler costs between $50 and $90. And even if patients do not have to pay the full price, they may still save money. That’s because many health plans have a lower co-payment for generics.
Advair Generic Price
Generics of Advair HFA are approved in three doses and are be priced between $49 and $150 for an inhaler.
As for Advair Diskurs, on average, this branded medicine costs about $524.93 for one disk. This is a rather high price, especially given the fact that this medicine is normally used on a regular basis (twice a day). Resorting to Advair Diskurs Generic will allow you to pay as low as $90.99 for one disk pack of generic Advair Diskus.