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New COPD treatment approved in Wales

A new treatment for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease has been approved for use by the NHS in Wales.

The All Wales Medicines Strategy Group has recommended aclidinium bromide (Eklira Genuair) as an option for use within NHS Wales as a maintenance bronchodilator treatment to relieve symptoms in adult COPD patients.

Aclidinium is a new twice-daily, long-acting muscarinic antagonist. It is the first to be delivered by a multi-dose dry powder inhaler.

Evidence considered by the group suggested aclidinium provided noticeable benefits to health-related quality of life and patient symptoms such as breathlessness.

The most frequently reported adverse events in trials were headache and nasopharyngitis.

It is estimated there are 66,951 patients diagnosed with COPD in Wales, according to 2012 data from the GP quality and outcomes framework.

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