Patient perspectives on fluticasone–vilanterol versus other corticosteroid combination products for the treatment of asthma

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Patient Preference and Adherence


Objective: Fluticasone furoate (FF), an inhaled corticosteroid (ICS), and vilanterol (VI), a long-acting beta2 receptor agonist (LABA), is a new combination used in an Ellipta® device. This article compares FF–VI to other ICS–LABA combinations available, particularly emphasizing product selection from the patient perspective. Data sources: A PubMED and EMBASE search completed in October 2015 identified trials using the MeSH terms “fluticasone”, “vilanterol”, and “asthma”. Additional information was gathered from references cited in the identified publications, the manufacturer, package insert, and registry. Study selection/data extraction: Preference was given to randomized controlled clinical trials. Animal trials, trials for COPD, and non-English sources were excluded. Data synthesis: Seven efficacy trials of FF–VI in asthma were identified. Only one (24 weeks) trial compared FF–VI to another ICS–LABA combination (fluticasone propionate–salmeterol). Primary outcomes (usually lung function) and secondary outcomes (eg, quality of life and symptom scores) were comparable. In three FF–VI safety trials, the type and frequency of common adverse reactions (ie, thrush and dysphonia) were similar to those in clinical trials. Over 90% of subjects rated the Ellipta® device as “easy to use” and demonstrated correct device technique initially and at 4 weeks. Conclusion: Individuals may have drug- and device-specific preferences that should be incorporated into therapeutic decision making. Limited data indicate that clinical and patient-oriented efficacy/safety outcomes of FF–VI are likely comparable to other available combinations for adults with asthma. Patient-friendly features include once-daily dosing, flexibility of dose timing, and design/ease of the use of the device. Additional larger and long-term comparative studies are needed to determine whether these features translate into greater efficacy, safety, patient preference, or adherence versus other ICS–LABA combinations. In the next few years, the availability of less expensive generic ICS–LABA products may strongly influence patient preference.

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