Inhaled bronchodilators (alone or in combination) are the cornerstone of treatment for symptomatic patients with COPD, either as initial/first-line treatment or for second-line/treatment escalation in patients who experience persistent symptoms or exacerbations on monotherapy. The Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease 2022 report recommends initial pharmacological treatment with a long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA) or a long-acting β2-agonist (LABA) as monotherapy for most patients, or dual bronchodilator therapy (LABA/LAMA) in patients with more severe symptoms, regardless of exacerbation history. The recommendations for LABA/LAMA are broader in the American Thoracic Society treatment guidelines, which strongly recommend LABA/LAMA combination therapy over LAMA or LABA monotherapy in patients with COPD and dyspnea or exercise intolerance. However, despite consistent guideline recommendations, real-world prescribing data indicate that LAMA and/or LABA without an inhaled corticosteroid are not the most widely prescribed therapies in COPD. This article reviews global and regional/national guideline recommendations for the use of LABA/LAMA in COPD, examines the evidence for the effectiveness and safety of LABA/LAMA versus other therapies and offers a practical guide for clinicians to help ensure appropriate use of LABA/LAMA therapy.
COPD; Bronchodilator; Inhaled corticosteroid
Miravitlles M, Kawayama T, Dreher M. LABA/LAMA as First-Line Therapy for COPD: A Summary of the Evidence and Guideline Recommendations. J Clin Med. 2022 Nov 8;11(22):6623.
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