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Australian Journal of Pharmacy : November 2006
product news ethical products New-look Sandoz retains packaging P HARMACY and patient-friendly labelling is set to stay at Sandoz, with the Sandoz logo to replace that of Hexal, and ‘Sandoz’ added to generic style brand names for new Sandoz products in new-look packaging. The new Sandoz packaging preserves labelling features which have gained Sandoz-Hexal a reputation for industry best practice, according to Sandoz Australia managing director Dr John Stokes. It also marks the phasing out of the Hexal name by the integrated Sandoz-Hexal operations, which will in future trade exclusively under the Sandoz banner. Dr Stokes said that the repackaging would differ only minimally from that which Hexal had developed over many years with the help of pharmacists and consumers. While the Hexal name and logo will be replaced by the Sandoz equivalents, established brand names such as Talohexal and Oxetine (both Hexal) and Maxamox (Sandoz) will, in most cases, continue. 1800 634 500 ¦ Taxotere on PBS for early stage breast cancer F Vytorin reduces LDL cholesterol ROM 1 October, Taxotere (docetaxel) is available on the PBS for the adjuvant treatment of node-positive breast cancer and the treatment of HER-2 positive early breast cancer. The results from the recent Breast Cancer International Research Group (BCIRG) study, a large international trial, revealed that women taking Taxotere in combination with doxorubicin and cyclophosphamide (TAC) had the risk of death reduced by 30 per cent and the risk of disease returning reduced by 28 per cent, when compared to standard treatment for node-positive breast cancer (FAC—fluorouracil in combination with doxorubicin and cyclophosphamide). Taxotere has been used in Australian women with advanced breast cancer since it was approved in February 1996. A recently published head-to-head trial revealed Taxotere was superior in the treatment of advanced breast cancer compared with paclitaxel, with the two-year survival rate for Taxotere at 33 per cent, significantly more than 22 per cent for paclitaxel. The results of a recent Australian survey also revealed that 90 per cent of women who have (or have had) breast cancer stated they would tolerate severe side effects of a chemotherapy treatment, if there was a greater chance of their disease not returning. ¦ Staphylococcus aureus). These drug-resistant bacteria are claimed to be responsible for almost 22,000 infections in hospitals each year. The TGA approved Tygacil (tigecycline), a novel broad spectrum antibiotic, for the New treatment for drug-resistant bacteria A treatment of complicated intra-abdominal infections (cIAI) and complicated skin and skin structure infections (cSSSI) in adults, where there is known or suspected resistance to other antibiotics, or if other reasons prevent the use of existing treatments. Tygacil is not listed on the PBS. Tygacil should not be used in patients with an allergy to the active ingredient, tigecycline. It should be used with caution in patients allergic to tetracycline antibiotics. Tygacil is only given by intravenous injection. ¦ 52 ? THE AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF PHARMACY VOL 87 NOVEMBER 2006 (‘bad’) cholesterol (LDL-C) reduction compared with rosuvastatin (Crestor) in patients with primary hypercholest- erolemia, according to data published recently in the international journal Current Medical Research and Opinion (CMRO). The study, which provides the first comparative data for Vytorin versus rosuvastatin, was performed to assess the efficacy for LDL-C lowering of Vytorin compared with rosuvastatin at 10/20mg, 10/40mg and 10/80mg versus 10mg, 20mg, and 40mg doses respectively. At each dose comparison and across V doses, Vytorin reduced LDL-C levels significantly more than rosuvastatin. When averaged across doses, there was a greater reduction in LDL-C from baseline with Vytorin (–55.8 per cent) compared to rosuvastatin (–51.6 per cent). Vytorin provided greater LDL-C reduction than rosuvastatin across the dose range and at each dose comparison. www.merck.com or www.schering-plough.com ¦ YTORIN (ezetimibe/simvastatin) provides significantly greater LDL new antibiotic has been launched in Australia, which has been proven effective against many drug-resistant bacteria, including MRSA (methicillin-resistant