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Triple Therapy in COPD

[ Vol. 15 , Issue. 2 ]


Claudio Micheletto* and Alice Sparacino   Pages 102 - 111 ( 10 )


Triple inhaled therapy for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) includes an inhaled corticosteroid (ICS), a long-acting b2-agonist (LABA) and a long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA) taken in combination. Triple therapy is recommended by the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) for patients who experience recurrent exacerbations despite treatment with either a dual bronchodilator or LABA/ICS combination. There is consistent evidence that the LABA/LAMA/ICS combination has significantly greater effects on trough FEV1, symptoms, quality of life, and exercise performance compared to comparator treatments.

The role of triple therapy in reducing exacerbations in COPD patients is debatable, but recent trials have revealed some intriguing insights.

Three pivotal studies, namely TRILOGY, TRINITY and TRIBUTE have been conducted to evaluate the safety and efficacy of extrafine Beclomethasone/Formoterol Fumarate/Glycopyrronium Bromide (BDP/FF/GB) versus different treatment options for COPD. Extrafine BDP/FF/GB has been compared to an ICS/LABA (BDP/FF) combination in the TRILOGY study, to a LAMA monotherapy (Tiotropium-TIO) and an extemporary triple combination of ICS/LABA + LAMA (BDP/FF + TIO) in the TRINITY study, and to one inhalation of LABA/LAMA per day (Indacaterol/ Glycopyrronium - IND/GLY) in the TRIBUTE study.

Another triple therapy with Fluticasone Furoate/Umeclidinium/Vilanterol (FF/UMEC/VI) was recently tested in two further studies that included patients with COPD. The FULFIL study compared the efficacy of the triple FF/UMEC/VI therapy to the ICS/LABA association budesonide/formoterol, while the IMPACT study compared the rate of moderate and severe exacerbations between singleinhaler FF/UMEC/VI and single-inhaler FF/VI or UMEC/VI.


COPD, patients, pharmacological treatment, triple therapy, Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD), long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA).


Respiratory Unit, University Hospital, Verona, IRCCS Centro Neurolesi "Bonino Pulejo", Messina

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