The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is reviewing a type of medication used in some EU countries to treat and prevent chest infections and flare-ups of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Bacterial lysate medicines are a treatment given to people that might get lots of lung infections and to people with COPD. They are either swallowed as tablets or as a liquid mixture – or breathed in through the nose as a liquid – and are meant to work by getting the body to recognise and fight infections.
However, recent studies have shown that bacterial lysate medicines may not be as effective as previously thought – and, in rare cases, can cause serious side effects for the immune system. The Italian Medicines Agency (AIFA) has therefore asked the EMA to review the evidence on these medications and decide whether they should still be prescribed.
The EMA’s Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) will now begin the review. Their findings will be passed on to the European Commission, who will then produce a legally-binding decision that will apply to all EU Member States.
Learn about the factors that can cause lung disease and the ways to reduce your contact with them.
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