New BTS asthma guidelines encourage use of low-GWP inhalers
Section 8.6 of the new BTS/SIGN Guideline for the management of asthma highlights the environmental impact of metered dose inhalers (pMDI) and recommends that inhalers with low global-warming potential (GWP) should be used when likely to be equally effective. Low GWP inhalers would include dry powder inhalers (which contain no propellant) but, usefully, where pMDIs are needed, prescribers are encouraged to use lower volume devices (e.g. Salamol rather than Ventolin blue inhaler).
"Prescribers, pharmacists and patients should be aware that there are significant differences in the global-warming potential of different MDIs and that inhalers with low global-warming potential should be used when they are likely to be equally effective. Where there is no alternative to MDIs, lower volume HFA134a inhalers should be used in preference to large volume or HFA227ea inhalers.
"Patients should be encouraged to ask the pharmacy they use if they can recycle their used inhalers."
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