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The Therapeutic Goods Association has
approved Dymista 125/50 (azelastine
hydrochloride/fluticasone propionate) for
treating patients with allergic rhinitis that
affects more than three million Australians.
Dymista is an intranasal treatment that
has been approved to treat symptoms
of moderate to severe allergic rhinitis
and rhino-conjunctivitis in sufferers
aged 12 years and older, where use of a
combination (intranasal antihistamine and
glucocorticoid) treatment is appropriate.
Its approval in Australia is based on
positive results derived from extensive
global clinical studies in more than 4,600
patients.3 The studies found Dymista to
be twice as effective in treating nasal
and ocular symptoms as compared to
azelastine monotherapy and fluticasone
propionate monotherapy a topical
antihistamine or corticosteroid alone.
[Reflective total 7 symptoms score (rT7SS),
post-hoc analysis, placebo subtracted
Richard Harvey, Program Head and
Associate Professor, Rhinology and
Skull Base Surgery, St Vincent’s Hospital,
University of NSW (conjoint) and Macquarie
University (clinical), said new treatment
options were important in helping
provide relief to Australian allergic rhinitis
sufferers. ‘ There is an enormous gap in
our treatments for allergic rhinitis as most
nasal therapies take some time before
they have an effect. A local treatment that
is fast-acting and preventive of further
inflammation has benefits for both patients
who don’t want to use nasal sprays on a
daily basis and for those who still have
suboptimal control of symptoms with their
current therapy,’ he said.
Dymista has an onset of action within
30 minutes. It can be used one spray
per nostril twice daily for the treatment
of symptoms such as nasal congestion,
runny nose, sneezing, itchy nose and
itchy, red, watery eyes.
1. DYMISTA 125/50 Approved Product Information
2. Hampel et al. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 2010;105:168–73
3. Meltzer et al. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2013;161:369–77
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has announced
that Benlysta (belimumab) is now
available in Australia for use as an
add-on therapy in adult patients with
active, autoantibody-positive systemic
lupus erythematosus (SLE) with a high
degree of disease activity despite
It is estimated up
to 32,000 people in Australia are living
with various forms of lupus, including
The current goal of treatment is to
control disease activity and minimise
complications. Persistent disease
activity has been shown to contribute
to organ damage and mortality.
Many patients remain uncontrolled on
standard therapy, including suffering
unpredictable flares of disease
activity or experiencing unacceptable
Benlysta is a monoclonal antibody that
inhibits soluble BlyS. BlyS is believed
to be important in the production of
antibodies which attack and destroy the
body’s own healthy tissues.
a hospital administered infusion
treatment, represents an important new
therapeutic option which specifically
targets one of the underlying
abnormalities seen in SLE.
was based on two clinical trials, known
as BLISS-52 and BLISS-76, comprising
one of the largest clinical trial programs
ever conducted in lupus patients and
involving nearly 1,700 patients from
over 30 countries.
defined the SLE patient type suitable
for BENLYSTA and forms the basis of its
approval by the TGA in Australia.
Benlysta is not available on the
Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme
(PBS) and is available through private
prescription and through several
hospitals in Australia.
1. Benlysta Approved Product Information, at: www.gsk.com.
Publications/Lupus-report.aspx. Accessed on 20 Jun, 2014.
3. Navarra, S et al. Lancet, 2011;377(9767):721–31.
4. Furie, R etal. Arthritis and Rheumatism, 2011;63(12):3918–30
5. Van Vollenhoven RF et al. Ann Rheum Dis 2012;71:1343–9 .
MSD has released Nasonex
(mometasone furoate) Allergy Nasal
Spray for limited allergic rhinitis
(AR),which is available over the
counter as a Schedule 2 (S2) medicine.
Nasonex Allergy has an identical
formulation to the prescription
Nasonex, with 50 micrograms per
actuation (as monohydrate). The dosage
instruction is also identical for the
same AR patients they are indicated
for – initially, two sprays into each
nostril once daily. Once symptoms are
controlled, dosage must be reduced to
one spray into each nostril once daily.
Nasonex Allergy is indicated for:
• prevention and relief of seasonal
allergic rhinitis (hayfever) symptoms
• relief of perennial allergic rhinitis
• adults and children aged 12 years
• short term use (up to 6 months).
Medical advice should be sought
beyond 6 months.
Nasonex Nasal Spray (S4) will continue
to be available from a doctor as a private
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