Prescribing Advice for GPs

An NHS Prescribing Advisers' Blog

Drug Safety Update - May 2018

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has published Drug Safety Update for May 2018 (PDF).

This issue advised that Pregnancy Prevention Programme materials relating to the recent valproate medicines safety update are now available online.

This is also notifies readers of the risk of inhalation of capsules if placed in the mouthpiece of the Braltus® inhaler. It is recommended that patients are shown how to use the inhaler using a placebo device from the manufacturer. Patients should also be advised to store capsules in the screw-cap bottle provided (never in the inhaler) and to always check the mouthpiece is clear before inhaling.

The summary of letters to healthcare professionals includes information about the risk of mix-ups between Fiasp®▼ and Tresiba®. Fiasp are coloured yellow while Tresiba is light green; they are visually quite similar. Any patient concurrently using these two products should be advised to be extra vigilant in ensuring they are using the correct product. To strengthen the differentiation between the products, from June 2018 Fiasp® will be available coloured red and yellow.

Attention is also drawn to a recent field safety notice regarding faulty batches of Accu-Chek Aviva and Performa test strips. These batches have a higher risk of strip error messages and false high and low blood glucose results.

Action: Clinicians should be aware of this month's new guidance and implement any necessary changes to practice.

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