No more Primatene Mist in the U.S. after this year
September 22nd, 2011
01:56 PM ET

No more Primatene Mist in the U.S. after this year

The Food and Drug Administration is reminding doctors and patients that Primatene Mist, the only nonprescription asthma inhaler in the United States, can no longer be sold or prescribed after December 31.   Asthma patients are urged to get prescriptions for alternative medications, since this treatment option runs out at the end of the year, the FDA said Thursday.

Primatene Mist, an epinephrine inhaler, made by Armstrong Pharmaceutical Inc., contains chlorofluorocarbons, a chemical known to deplete the ozone layer.   After the United States signed an international agreement - The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer - to phase-out the compounds, the FDA announced in 2008,  that these inhalers could not be made or sold in 2012.

"If you rely on an over-the-counter inhaler to relieve your asthma symptoms, it is important that you contact a health care professional to talk about switching to a different medicine to treat your asthma," said Dr. Badrul Chowdhury, director of the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Rheumatology Products in the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

Chlorofluorocarbons are chemicals that contain fluorine, chlorine, and carbon. With inhalers, they are used as a propellant to move the medication, helping the user to breathe it in. According to The National Library of Science at the National Institutes of Health, once released, the odorless, colorless and nontoxic compounds get into the Earth's atmosphere where they break apart and release chemicals that destroy the Earth's ozone layer. CFCs can last more than 100 years in the atmosphere.

The FDA says a number of manufacturers have already replaced their CFC inhalers with a propellant called hydrofluoroalkane  or HFA, which is more environment-friendly, but there's currently no HFA version of an epinephrine inhaler available. Epinephrine is a hormone that's used to treat life-threatening allergic reactions. It opens up the airways in the lungs and allows patients to breathe more easily.

CFCs have been used in products like refrigerators, air conditioners, cleaning products and aerosols since the 1930s. Those products with CFCs were banned in the U.S. in 1995. They've been used in inhalers since the 1980s.

Chowdhury says asthma patients can continue using an inhaler that's not empty by the December 31 deadline as long as the expiration date is still good. He says HFA inhalers are safe and effective, but warns they may taste and feel different. "Talk with your health care professional to make sure you are using it correctly and getting the correct dose."

According to Chowdhury there are two prescription inhalers that still use CFCs. Those products are also part of the international agreement and they have phase-out dates of December 31, 2013.

soundoff (789 Responses)
  1. KD

    I used to use this inhaler when I was poor and had no insurance. I think it is a crime that they are being banned. Even after I got insurance, the old CFC inhaler cost only about 5 or 10 bucks. When they switched to the HFC it shot up to 40. I can get them now for about 20, again, with hc insurance.

    What are poor people supposed to do? Die? Because a product that collectively produces less CFCs than a cow flatulence is now banned? I once had a lib tell me she didn't care about banning the cfc inhalers because she'd rather not die of skin cancer. I told her to buy some frakking sunscreen and get her hands off my inhalers.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:01 | Report abuse | Reply
    • abor86

      Of course, that liberal probably also wanted everyone to have affordable, guaranteed health care, so that affording the medication wouldn't be an issue.

      September 22, 2011 at 19:12 | Report abuse |
    • AngryAboutThis

      Your thought is 100% fact!!

      This Is a CRIME!!!

      September 22, 2011 at 19:24 | Report abuse |
    • And....

      @ abor86 And of course, conservatives are the one that is fine with a people dying for treatable disease, because medical assistance shouldn't be affordable to everyone. I thought life is precious and even "conservative" christian republicans think helping each other is important. But obviously that's not the case when you apply it REAL LIFE, instead of THEORY.

      September 22, 2011 at 19:25 | Report abuse |
    • falkentyne

      The easy answer is to have the environmentally safe inhaler available for the same price as the original one, so that poor people don't have to suffer. But that's simply too convenient for the people running the show. FYI, I'm a "liberal" too, but I actually have a brain.

      September 22, 2011 at 19:28 | Report abuse |
    • oh light of lifee

      @ And.... Hi And... don't know if you know this but there was a separation between church and state a lonnnng freaking time ago. I don't know where it says you have to tie Christianity into conservatism. Isn't it possible to be liberal/ democrat and be a christian?

      September 22, 2011 at 19:41 | Report abuse |
    • Howard in Allexandria, VA

      I'm all for saving the Earth, but hey! Realistically, how much CFC can all these inhalers put into the atmosphere? We're talking about an (relatively) inexpensive medication for people who have trouble BREATHING!!!!

      September 22, 2011 at 19:59 | Report abuse |
    • FatSean

      Really health care should be handled by the government so everyone gets a fair shake. Everyone gets a minimum of coverage with option to buy private insurance.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:02 | Report abuse |
    • GhostRider13

      A friend of mine also used Primatene when she was a student because she couldn't afford insurance. She could see student health care, but she couldn't afford the prescriptions they wrote.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:05 | Report abuse |
    • liberal stupidity

      This is the stupid consequences of the liberal stupidity of this country.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:24 | Report abuse |
    • SaureusNola

      The best answer is that poor people should just stop being poor. People create their own problems. I was born with asthma on a dirt farm, now I have a great job, a family, and I can afford my medication. How about that?

      September 22, 2011 at 20:32 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      My cousin has always had asthma, but now uses a prescription inhaler and is on the high school track team. He makes minimum wage. You're saying a grown and supposedly responsible adult can't afford more than he can? Not to mention, we've dragged our feet with the same tactics as China while the rest of the developed world passed us by on phasing out CFCs, and look at them. They have affordable health care, happy citizens, and a clean environment. And we're supposed to be the bright and shining model nation?

      September 22, 2011 at 20:38 | Report abuse |
    • OhioGirl82

      You are on the mark. It's not just about affordability, it is also about availability. My husband has forgotten his inhaler when heading to a friend's house for the weekend. I am sure some believe that if he is stupid enough to forget his inhaler, he deserves to die. However, we have been fortunate that Primatene Mist is available at the corner drug store, and he can take a puff and still enjoy the weekend with friends, even though they have pets.

      September 22, 2011 at 21:48 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      If you have as life-threatening a condition you should be more responsible anyways. You shouldn't bet on the belief that you would make it X distance to X store and hope they have X drug in stock. Besides, I highly doubt the pharmacists would deny giving you another inhaler if you were actually dying as you said in your example. We need to be responsible for our own well being. That's another reason why healthcare costs so much these days. We eat what we want and end up obese and with a dozen problems, then hope all the pieces fall in place when we're in trouble. While some things are out of our control, responsibility is something that we can take charge of in any situation. Especially our own.

      September 22, 2011 at 21:55 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      You can tell when someone is trying to make a desperate argument when they use loaded words. While it is a poor decision (although yes, some would call it stupid) your husband would make forgetting something so critical to him, no one "deserves" to die. You exaggerate too much and try to cause hysteria. If you have an asthma attack the pharmacy wouldn't make you stand in line, check for insurance and make you pay, they would give you an inhaler immediately. And PM certainly isn't the only working inhaler on the market. My cousin uses a prescription inhaler.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:01 | Report abuse |
    • Nah

      abor: "Of course, that liberal probably also wanted everyone to have affordable, guaranteed health care, so that affording the medication wouldn't be an issue."

      Affordable, guaranteed healthcare...that is paid for by everyone else instead of you.

      How egalitarian.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:56 | Report abuse |
    • lolwut

      and: "And of course, conservatives are the one that is fine with a people dying for treatable disease, because medical assistance shouldn't be affordable to everyone. I thought life is precious and even "conservative" christian republicans think helping each other is important."

      Please stop making strawmen. They make you look exceedingly stupid.

      Conservatives are against the government (i.e., society) taking over your medical bills because, in the long run, it will cost everyone (tax payers) more. How? Because a part of the population will be paying for their own healthcare (the taxpayers) while simultaneously paying for the care of all the others who don't pay taxes. Not to mention that all healthcare decisions will have to be funneled through an administrative agency.

      Not to forget either how unwieldy and burdensome centralized planning and spending is. Or the (very real) fear that the government, if it ever is constrained by costs, will prioritize care. Just like they do in Canada.

      But no no. Conservatives are evil and want people to die. You're right.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:01 | Report abuse |
    • Chuck

      I've been an asthmatic for 25 years. Primatene is generally lousy, ineffective medication anyway. It is also easily abused. If someone really finds this more effective than readily availble prescription medications, I feel for them , but I am very skeptical that this is actually the case. With insurance, my inhalers cost $10.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:26 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Oh, and you better go lynch your own party officials, since it was Reagan that signed the Montreal Protocol and Bush signed the updated phasing schedule. I know it's painful to do, but go look up the dates the treaty and amendments were signed. Ouch.

      OMG both our parties, the UN, world nations and leaders, and religious figures and academics are all trying to kill me! Mass international conspiracy! The green industries had enough money to bribe that many people for two decades!

      /end sarcasm

      September 23, 2011 at 01:49 | Report abuse |
    • ouka

      CW – no, the pharmacy will not just "give you" a prescription inhaler if you are having an emergency. Selling, much less freely handing out Rx drugs without a script is a crime, one with very serious penalties for both the pharmacist and the company.

      September 23, 2011 at 15:46 | Report abuse |
  2. marti123

    The article only talks about the environment, which is critically important and enough reason to get rid of Primatene, but ignores countless tragic stories of death and morbidity from this dangerous drug that should have been pulled from the shelves years ago, even before concern for CFCs. And for those fooled into thinking this is the preferred alternative when they're "minutes away from death", you need to be in a hospital setting at that point anyway. At no point in my career as a physician would I have ever recommended this product, or ever once heard a physician recommend it. Now that I know it had CFC's in it, my opposition is even stronger!

    September 22, 2011 at 19:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Just saying.....

      marti – don't even try to pretend you are a doctor! You are probably some surfer greenie tree huger who is just spewing out nonsense crap trying to sound smart.

      September 22, 2011 at 19:45 | Report abuse |
    • John

      Anyone who starts out a comment with the cliched "Just sayin'..." is a total coward afraid to stand by his weak convictions. It's an apology, so don't bother listening to any drivel that follows it. This genius is still living in the 70's, afraid to face the facts about just how dangerous CFCs are. Simply put: no ozone layer, no life on Earth. ANYTHING that harms the ozone should be banned as soon as alternatives products are developed.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:00 | Report abuse |
    • Lisa

      The problem is there is no OTC alternative. What are people who have no health insurance supposed to do. It's easy to talk down to people when you are sitting on your high horse!

      September 22, 2011 at 20:08 | Report abuse |
    • Seriously?

      Because nobody's ever died from a physician prescribed drug or treatment in the history of medicine in the United States, right?

      September 22, 2011 at 20:48 | Report abuse |
    • mightyfudge

      Sorry doc, but if you dont suffer from asthma, this conversation is not for you. How about i come by your office tomorrow and step on your neck for a few minutes? I bet not being able to breathe for a few hundred seconds will change your opinion on this issue pretty darn quick...

      September 22, 2011 at 21:49 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      It's not about whether you suffer from asthma, my cousin does and he uses a prescription inhaler. It's about people trying to save $30-$50 getting one that's OTC. PM is not the only inhaler on the market, otherwise there would a monopoly.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:03 | Report abuse |
    • Actual lung doctor

      I am an actual pulmonologist. Primatine is a terrible drug, far less effective than albuterol. (The pills are even worse, but that's another subject). It should be pulled anyway because people use it instead of more effective therapy and their asthma gets worse – either over time until they have irreversible loss of lung function, or immediately and they have to go to the hospital because it's simply not strong enough to halt their attack.

      BTW, abuterol nebulizer solution is $4 at Wal Mart without insurance.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:58 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Well, that's why they call it a rescue inhaler, you're not supposed to constantly rely on it for asthma, its says on the product page itself. Most people don't read disclaimers and the fine print these days though...

      September 22, 2011 at 23:29 | Report abuse |
    • David


      Hey, ACTUAL LUNG DOCTOR, you are wrong. I've tried Albuterol. It's absolutely NOT "more effective" than Primatene in my case. Read through the comments here, and you'll see that my experience is not unique. Maybe Albuterol works better for some people, but I'm not one of them. I suspect that your disdain for this medication which I have used for more than three decades stems primarily from the fact that when people like me can get something that works OTC, people like you don't get a dime.

      December 28, 2011 at 01:26 | Report abuse |
  3. Rick

    The couldn't come up with a alternate delivery method like every other product has?

    September 22, 2011 at 19:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • R Taylor

      It needs FDA approval. So only the name-brand pharma companies have been able to do it with a legal propellant. And they can charge big bucks for it, since they have a monopoly. So people who can't afford the prescription HFC inhalers will suffer and die.

      September 22, 2011 at 19:24 | Report abuse |
    • Just saying.....

      sure – they could come up with a cheap alternative but not during Obama's watch......... That man raises the prices on everything and just grins saying "it ain't a tax increase" but everything still ends up costing us more.

      September 22, 2011 at 19:47 | Report abuse |
    • liberal stupidity

      It will take 10 years or more for that to happen. Why would a drug company, who has to pay millions to get a new drug tested and through our stupid FDA bureaucracy (which has little to do with actual drug safety) – turn around and sell a new drug on the market for cheap. They have to first pay themselves back for all the R&D and Govt paperwork costs they incurred to get the product to market. ONLY after the patent has expired and the product can be duplicated by the generics will you see this product go out to the OTC market. Until then – the idiot liberals just did one more thing to drive up the cost of healthcare.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:29 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      They had over 2 decades of warning to do so, like the other manufacturers. Do some research. Montreal Protocol signed in 1988. They knew about it. Updated phasing schedule in 2003. They knew about it. Reminded in 2007 of their turn in 2012. Did they do anything? No. They didn't get this sprung on them overnight. Armstrong Pharma dragged their feet to play the drug patent game to make as much money as they could for as long as they could off asthmatics.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:08 | Report abuse |
    • E

      The HFA inhaler is the alternative method, and it is patented and thus expensive. The medicine is proven and generic and not an FDA issue, it is simply basic patent law regarding the dispensers.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:32 | Report abuse |
  4. Sandra

    How about instead of removing it from the mark, t make it with a different propellant? And to the blithe "Just go to your doctor" stupidity, what rock has that 'expert' been living under? Not everyone can afford to go to the doctor for asthma, or afford $100 or more for the cost of 'prescription' version.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:16 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Boater39

      Funny–I just said the same thing! Sounds like an EXCUSE to me.... Those prescription drug lobbyists are quite powerful...

      September 22, 2011 at 19:22 | Report abuse |
    • liberal stupidity

      It takes year to get that new drug combination (new propellant) approved through our over-bloated FDA process.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:31 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      ...and you just stated the larger picture i.e. the actual problem right there. Our government can't get anything done on time and make it affordable, like healthcare. Even though the other developed nations implemented the Montreal Protocol that we signed onto way ahead of us, and with affordable healthcare.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:43 | Report abuse |
    • jim d.

      it doesn't cost $100 for a prescription version not even close i've bought them for an ambulance company for many years

      September 23, 2011 at 01:16 | Report abuse |
  5. fishinbob

    The lack of science education in this country is painfully evident, right here on the CNN boards, and in Congress as well. CFCs do deplete the ozone; the reaction between chlorine and ozone is well understood, in fact, had you learned your high school chemistry, you would understand it as well. Furthermore, the amount of naturally occurring chlorine in the stratosphere accounts for only 18% of the total amount of chlorine compounds found there- the rest are all man made. The "hole"(its not really a hole, but localized thinning) in the ozone is not gone, in fact record losses in ozone concentrations over the artics have been recorded as recently as March of this year. CFCs are incredibly long-lived compounds, and full depletion of them from the atmosphere will take hundreds of years. The best we can hope to do is slow the loss of ozone by not adding more CFCs to the atmosphere.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:16 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Just saying.....

      again I ask – a precise figure for the amount of CFC's released by year into the atmosphere.

      Or are you on those intelligent liberals who believe if something is bad then no amount of it should be allowed? dipwad

      September 22, 2011 at 19:50 | Report abuse |
    • sdcommonsense

      Well Bob, for a guy who seems to know so much about science, you don't seem to understand the real issue here... like most of the people you call 'ignorant'. There is only one way to fix this earth, and all the living organisms that inhabit it. Reduce human population...(do I need to say that again)... Reduce human population!! Reducing cfc's, deforestation, carbon emmisions...ect..ect.. will do absolutely NOTHING to "save the earth", or its living inhabitants as long as human population is growing at an exponential rate... It is simple math, something that should have been taught to you, and every 4th grade science student.. There is only ONE problem on this earth... Solve that problem, and all other problems go away 🙂

      September 22, 2011 at 20:22 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Obviously reducing the population is the ultimate solution but look at China for your best example of that. Don't think our fellow Americans here clamoring for what they want for themselves rather

      As for CFCs, it's been widely proven and not debated in scientific circles. Do your own research and you'll find out what every reputable government and scientific agency, and the world collectively agreed on. Look up the Montreal Protocol and do your own research. But seriously speaking, you must be more ignorant than Bush not to believe it since he's the one who signed onto the phasing out of all CFCs, and that's a fact. And BTW, the CFC issue and global warming are not the same problem.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:50 | Report abuse |
  6. sister vivianne

    there are several different types of asthma, treated by different inhalers. Its a shame to take away one that works in an emergency situation, I agree. Most other inhalers are not used for a serious attack, but are ones meant to avert an attack before it happens. I cannot any of them, so my serious attacks are embarrassing when they happen. I already know how I will die, just not when.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:18 | Report abuse | Reply
    • hippymom

      Look into help getting them at no cost. My doctor gave me the name of a business that helps you apply for them from the manufacturer. There are income restrictions on the programs. They file all the paperwork for you and order refills for you. The prescription help business and the doctor work together so you can use the program to best suit your needs.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:11 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      You could try the FDA website, they have resources you can use to help find help to pay for medications. They also have more info on the phase-out and other info to help asthmatics and PM users.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:44 | Report abuse |
  7. R Taylor

    The generic abuterol inhalers were much more effective than the OTC inhalers, and used to be very cheap (a few dollars each), but now the only option for ashmatics is expensive name-brand HFA inhalers. They are typically relatively expensive even with good insurance.

    This is a case where the liberal enviromentalists really screwed up. Some people will suffer or perhaps even die because of this, which is a shame when these tiny inhalers have a negligible impact on the environment.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • lisa

      And the name brand HFA's to me, don't work as well as the older rx inhalers. I used to use Ventolin or albuterol, now have to use Ventolin HFA or Pro Air....... I think they don't work as well as the older ones. I don't feel like I receive the dosage. I don't know.......anyone else feel this way?

      September 22, 2011 at 21:08 | Report abuse |
  8. Boater39

    So, I wonder how many will die because of this. Hint: USE A DIFFERENT PROPELLANT IN IT AND MAKE THE TREE HUGGERS HAPPY!!

    Not to worry... Our wonderful healthcare system will take care of paying for all of those overpriced PRESCRIPTION inhalers (I wonder how many use the same propellant.... Hmmmm).

    What? You mean we DON'T have health insurance for all!?!?!?! Oh, well. Guess those uninsured aren't worth saving. Carry on!

    September 22, 2011 at 19:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Exactly, the real problem, and the one that would actually solve numerous other problems plaguing us and others, is affordable healthcare. If the other developed nations can use healthy and green products, have affordable healthcare, and happy citizens, why can't we? We've already dragged our feet side-by-side with China on the Montreal Protocol, how much more do we have to do to prove we're just like them?

      September 22, 2011 at 20:53 | Report abuse |
    • lolwut

      cw: "If the other developed nations can use healthy and green products, have affordable healthcare, and happy citizens, why can't we?"

      It's cute that you assume other countries have affordable healthcare without proving that they actually do.

      Do you realize most Canadians pay 40% of their income in taxes to the government? All to support social programs.

      You do realize that national healthcare will have to be paid for by taxes, and it will burden those who do (in fact) pay taxes, right?

      September 22, 2011 at 23:04 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Well obviously it's not going to work by itself, we also need to be more responsible with our own health, then healthcare won't cost insane amounts will it? All we Americans do is eat whatever we want, get sick, then want the doctors to fix us so we can keep doing it. If we actually started eating healthy over half our diseases wouldn't be a problem or have their effects minimized. Why do you think the FDA wasted all that money on that new plate design instead of the pyramid, which probably won't work either.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:34 | Report abuse |
  9. Patrick

    Primatene mist is one of the old-school inhalers that keeps you awake for 24 hours after you take it. Trust me, there are better ones out there than this one. This is a dinosaur inhaler.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Roarin

    This is asinine and misguided. I bet one car driving for a year does more harm to the ozone than every inhaler ever used. What a croc this is. This is truly awful and I cannot stand whoever pushed for this.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:30 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      That would be Reagan's administration that signed the original, Bush approved the updated phasing amendment, the world for all agreeing to it, us Americans for approving it for over 2 decades, and Armstrong for not working on a replacement sooner.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:37 | Report abuse |
  11. Mik

    Proof that the FDA is in the drug companies pocket. Why save the ozone if you can't breath. Get rid of all the BS in Washington, that will help clear the air.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      People like you don't deserve input since you clearly don't know the larger picture. The FDA is implementing the next phase of the CFC ban agreed by all UN member nations in the Montreal Protocol in the late 80s. They didn't randomly decide to do this to ruin your day. People keeping up with the news (including the drug companies) have known about it for decades. And before blaming liberals, the ironic fact is, Reagan signed the original, and Bush Jr. signed the updated schedule.

      September 23, 2011 at 00:58 | Report abuse |
  12. FBMarky

    You can't blame liberals for this – the treaty was signed during the Bush administration. Try again.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ken

      "The treaty was opened for signature on September 16, 1987, and entered into force on January 1, 1989..." Seems like that came under Clinton's watch....

      September 22, 2011 at 19:55 | Report abuse |
    • Bank Zog

      Bush #1 administration. Clinton was elected in 1992.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:08 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Please study your history a bit more...Signature Montreal Protocol signed 1987-09-16 (Reagan), Montreal Protocol signed 1988-04-21 (Reagan), Montreal Amendment signed 2003-10-01 (Bush). Source: UNEP, UN

      September 22, 2011 at 23:50 | Report abuse |
  13. Just saying.....

    article does not provide firm facts about the amount of CFC's released into the atmosphere by Primatene Mist. Nor can I find that information using Google.

    How much CFC's are released by use of asthma inhalers?

    September 22, 2011 at 19:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Gary

    My girlfriend,who is a Respiratory Therapist,has told me Armstrong Pharmaceuticals,the company who makes Primatene Mist,is working on a replacement.I haven't contacted the company personally,but I'm pretty sure she was informed correctly.After all,not only is there a lot of lasthmatic ives involved,but there's a lot of money involved as well.You can contact Armstrong Pharmaceuticals at 1-8-PRIMATENE or 1-877-462-8363 , Monday-Friday; 9:00AM-5:00PM PST.I use Primatene Mist myself,as a backup for my asthma inhaler.

    September 22, 2011 at 19:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Big Pharma Billionares

    So lets us see here.Primatene supposedly causes Ozone depletion.

    Okay so paying for a prescription and the doctors visit is going to magically stop the damage to the Ozone?
    You sheeple are being fleeced by the FDA and big Pharma, wake up!

    September 22, 2011 at 19:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. DB

    Is this the result of Al Gore's nonsince again. This idiot should be taken out back and shot for all the stupid stuff and costs he has created for his own greed. People need this inhaler, I need it. So what are we suppose to do lay on the ground and die while looking up and Ozone and saying isn't that nice up there. Give me a break. The Shuttle use to burn a hole in the Ozone layer about 5 miles in diameter every time it went up and where were the crys of concern then?

    September 22, 2011 at 20:04 | Report abuse | Reply
    • DB

      Maybe I should not have said "shot" more like censored.

      September 22, 2011 at 20:15 | Report abuse |
    • Jean Sartre - Milwaukee, WI

      Yes, dying could be good for you; you seem to lack any real cognitive functions, only emotionalism...

      September 22, 2011 at 20:54 | Report abuse |
    • KeepAmericaClean

      no, your good, "shot" is the correct word .

      September 22, 2011 at 21:14 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Someone needs to get off whatever it is they're on. This wasn't Gore's doing, in fact the CFC bans were ironically initiated and continued by 2 Republican Presidents, and their favorites, Reagan and Bush. And it's not PM that's banned, it's the CFC they're using which in all reality should cost them a buck to replace each propellant, like the aerosol industry did. No, this is Armstrong Pharmaceutical's fault for waiting until they were out of time to develop replace the propellant, and thus pass on the trouble to asthmatics. This wasn't dumped on them overnight. Please direct your anger at the drug companies people!

      September 23, 2011 at 00:12 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Apparently, Republicans are all in Al Gore's pocket too, since they agreed to all of it, and even started it.

      September 23, 2011 at 03:01 | Report abuse |
  17. Payer

    Hey this stuff works! Let's get rid of it! Brilliant

    September 22, 2011 at 20:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. hippymom

    The new inhalers are not as effective as the old that is the down side to them. That is no laughing matter when one can't breathe properly. I know I have asthma. There is help out there for people who don't have prescription drug coverage. The inhalers are available for no charge.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Speedy

    Primatene mist is easily abused and, if nothing else, leads to psychological dependency. But there's something possibly even worse. If it were throughly researched, I think researchers might find that a high number of Primatene users/abusers eventually experience Alzheimer's or senile dementia. I am not laying claim that Primatene is a catalyst for either but there is some connection between it and those health situations. Maybe it is because Primatene is used to relieve lack of oxygen intake and there's a high possibility that forms of oxygen deprivation are linked to Alzheimer's and senile dementia. Maybe it's more. Maybe there's no connection. I'm personally inclined to consider there may be some sort of connection.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • David

      Gee, thanks Professor Speedy, for sharing your baseless speculation with the world. If you're worried about Alzheimers, maybe you should put a plastic bag over your head, since your theory seems to be that oxygen deprivation somehow prevents it. In your case, it may be too late (I detect signs of severe dementia in your post), but it's worth a try, right?

      December 28, 2011 at 01:37 | Report abuse |
  20. mhwriter

    I think the use of Axe body spray has much more of an effect on the ozone layer than Primatene mist. But seriously, the punishment of asthma patients in this case, is like arresting squeegee men for the crimes of financial experts like Bernie Madoff.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Actually, your Axe has no effect. CFCs were removed from aerosols decades ago. The drug companies however, got to drag their feet.

      September 23, 2011 at 03:02 | Report abuse |
  21. Logo4245

    Racist – plain and simple. As former teacher, many poor children count rely on this med. Environmentalists are closet Eugenists.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • rootdog

      Do you mean supporters of Eugene Debbs?

      September 22, 2011 at 20:51 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Right, you just keep using loaded words and inflammatory language based on emotions rather than logic and reasoning. Oh, and you do realize Reagan and Bush are the ones that signed the Montreal Protocol right? Oh wait, I forgot, Republicans don't research facts...or in most cases, any research at all.

      September 23, 2011 at 02:59 | Report abuse |
    • ADiff

      Only too true!

      September 23, 2011 at 13:13 | Report abuse |
  22. RT in Tennessee

    The companies that make the inhalers, including Armstrong, have known for many years that they would eventually have to reformulate the inhalers to change from CFC to HFA. They used this to their advantage to renew patents, many of which had long expired, which is why there are no generic HFA inhalers and the brand names have gotten so expensive. The reason is that its not just a simple matter of changing from one propellant to another. In order to do it, you have to reformulate the drug as well which is what allowed them to renew the patents and kill the generics. Its a dirty game that drug companies play all the time and the consumer is the one to suffer. And yes, the FDA gives them their blessing to do this. The only worse thing is pulling a very good drug but sitting on the patent so nobody else can produce it.
    In addition to being an RT, I also have asthma and relied on my inexpensive generic albuterol. The cost has now gone up significantly and while I am in grad school and basically uninsured, I simply can't afford to keep using it.
    As for primatine, the stuff is BAD and if used improperly or too much, it WILL kill you. I've seen too many people in the ER that were trying to self medicate themselves with it and ended up with a heart rate close to 200 or cardiac arrest. I know its not possible for everyone but if you have asthma, especially if it is not well controlled, you need to be seeing a healthcare professional. Lots of times they have "samples" they can give you and many of the drug companies do have provisions for people who can't afford their medication.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jean Sartre - Milwaukee, WI

      The SAMPLE idea may be a good one, however, here in the GREAT STATE of WISCONSIN hospitals and the doctors that work for them are now PROHIBITED from giving any of their patients any SAMPLES; I believe that this protocol is going state wide by the end of this year...

      September 22, 2011 at 21:03 | Report abuse |
  23. Logo4245

    Racist – plain and simple. Many poor children count rely on this med. Environmentalists are closet Eugenists.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:24 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Right, so I'm sure businesses should also be called racists and eugenists when someone can't afford food. Are you even listening to yourself? You're implying that certain races are incapable of earning money. Honestly speaking, when you're in the US, everyone can, as long as they're motivated enough and step out of their comfort zone instead of despairing and resigning themselves to their fate. If a first-generation immigrant who came to the US with nothing but $1.5k can eventually do it, so can anyone else. It's relatively much easier to do here than most other places in the world, believe me.

      September 22, 2011 at 21:29 | Report abuse |
    • E

      poor people come in all races.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:37 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Yes, but he stated those who came up with this are racists because of the fact that poor children can't afford anything else, thereby implying the relationship.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:47 | Report abuse |
  24. Bookdoc

    I use the mister and, regadless of expiration date, I have a dozen saved for future use. I personally fell that, like the AGW scam, the whole "affecting the ozone layer" is junk science at its worst.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:28 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Stop watching Fox News and do your own research. CFCs causing ozone damage is not the same issue as global warming, and is not even an debated issue, it's a fact. Do a search about CFCs and name me a credible site or organization disputing the effect of CFCs (again, not the global warming debate). Well?

      September 23, 2011 at 00:32 | Report abuse |
  25. Matt

    I had asthma pretty bad when I was growing up. Fortunately, it mostly went away when I grew up.

    My Ventolin (albuterol) inhaler was very effective at treating asthma attacks. Every now and then, I would misplace my inhaler or something, and would try to make due with Primatine Mist. It did not seem to help much, and was probably about as effective as a placebo.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. CONcerned

    How conveinient, the drug companie$ get to gouge the helpless increasing poor population because of an obscure environmental law. The truth is the amount of CFCs in these inhalers is insignificant...its always about the damn $

    September 22, 2011 at 20:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Dell Stator


    September 22, 2011 at 20:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Dell Stator

    Yeah, THAT'S WHAT'S DESTROYING THE WORLD medical gases.
    It's BS like this that makes real efforts to help the world a joke, which, was the whole idea.
    Corporations make sure the enviornmental laws have enough stupidity in them to make them easy to joke about, which discredits those fighting for the enviornment.
    In the end though, laws our WRITTEN and passed by our elected representatives, not tree huggers, so cast the blame for scheming idocy where it belongs, our bought and paid for representatives.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      It's not the medication, it's the CFCs in the propellant.

      September 23, 2011 at 00:33 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      And look up what CFCs are, they're not a "medical gas."

      September 23, 2011 at 00:33 | Report abuse |
  29. Jethro Bodine

    No wonder the US is going down the tubes. We're a country of morons! Chlorofluorocarbons in Primatene Mist are desimating the atmosphere. Yeah, right!

    September 22, 2011 at 20:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jim d.

      decimating.. thanks for playing.

      September 23, 2011 at 01:19 | Report abuse |
    • iamthefredman

      'desimating'...or did you mean disseminating?

      September 23, 2011 at 14:55 | Report abuse |
  30. Sayward

    I use an inhaler for asthma. I'm lucky that my insurance will cover the price. Before this STUPID law, my inhaler cost me $5.00 (generic brand). NOW it cost me $30.00, because there is NO generic brand. Just imagine what it will cost a person who doesn't have insurance? And...how long will it be before "they" find something wrong with HFA and force us to replace that? Don't kid yourself here. It's NOT about "saving the ozone"! It's about money, power and GREED GREED GREED!!!!!! The drug companies COULD make all medicine affordable, but they don't!

    September 22, 2011 at 20:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jim d.

      uhhhh, errr if it's a generic it's not a brand and if it's a brand it's not a generic. brand name means brand name (like tylenol) generic means generic (like acetaminophen). there is no generic brand. i really how you are 13 or thereabouts because if your an adult and that stupid im freekin' impressed.......

      September 23, 2011 at 01:34 | Report abuse |
  31. rootdog

    The drug companies, like the shoe companies, and the grocery store chains are in business for ONE REASON.....to make a profit. They are no more morally or socially obligated to make sure everyone can afford their needed drugs than shoe companies and grocery store chains are obligated to make sure everyone can afford shoes or groceries. Same principle. My BMY (Bristol Myers Squibb) stock is ROCKIN'!

    September 22, 2011 at 20:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jean Sartre - Milwaukee, WI

      It's nice to hear from someone who really has his priorities correct...

      September 22, 2011 at 21:10 | Report abuse |
  32. Fckrrepubs

    I'm glad they are finally taking this off the market. It is DANGEROUS and addictive. Kids buy it to get high off of it.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. •Mary•

    •If you need, use Primatine Mist, stop complaining on the blogs & call and write the manufacturer, FDA, etc. Tell them they need to keep it on the market and why! START SOMETHING, DO SOMETHING on your behalf! Who knows if any changes will be made by voicing your opinion or sharing with others but at least YOU VOICED YOUR OPINION!YOU TRIED. Everyone should frequently STAND UP & STICK UP for ourselves in ALL things. Consumer issues, politics, changing policies, procedures, prices of everything. If we take baby steps turning into big steps some one will notice we are ALL adults & don't want to take any more S**T. With today's technology, internet access & social media these big companies & business's shouldn't be trying to dink us about for every last penny we have.
    We have the power to voice our opinions, irratations and anger in appropriate ways by using Facebook, Twitter, email, Blogs. Don't even have to leave the living room to picket! So we don't really have an excuse not to participate and be our OWN voices either. Here's mine. Coca Cola is trying to slowly faze out the 24 can family pack for a 20 can pack for almost the same price as the 24. I realize it is not a crisis of any magnitude and I will not suffer. But, my family & I can drink up to four sometimes more 24 can family packs per month. Having no choice ( I do have choices!) to buy the 20 pack I would have a 16 can loss per month and financially I will be losing, I would have to buy an additional 20 can pack each month at an extra $ 7-9 dollars per month,or $ 84-98 extra per year. ( Not a math genius either.) Again, NOT a huge sum of money but every month, that monthly soda expense does not include the "junk" food tax we have to pay in Washingon State. I have to do a quite a bit of "robbing from Peter to pay Paul."If you agree and want to support my "cause" then don't by Coke. I will also support others thought and reasons if there not fair with prices or lie or only tell us half truths, I won't buy the product, use the product, eat the item or whatever will help you and your "cause." •MARY•

    September 22, 2011 at 20:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Fred

      Yeah, because complaining to large corporations always works.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:55 | Report abuse |
    • jim d.

      With today's technology, internet access & social media these big companies & business's shouldn't be trying to dink us about for every last penny we have.
      what about the schools? this is where most of us learned to use, and not abuse, the humble apostrophe. " business's " what does that mean anyway?????

      September 23, 2011 at 01:41 | Report abuse |
  34. CW

    DuPont which is by far a larger company to Armstrong Pharma, fought the first CFC ban of aerosols and even insisted that if there was a ban, it should be worldwide, which is exactly what is the case from the Montreal Protocol. They even changed their stance and supported a full CFC ban in the 1980s after debating the science behind it for a decade, and eventually agreed that it was true and proven fact.

    September 22, 2011 at 20:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. FreeWillzyx83

    We've managed to eliminate CFCs in refrigerators, A/Cs, and aerosol sprays, and I support all that, but this is overkill. I have to side against the U.S. here. They should have asked for an exemption for medical devices be in the treaty or withdrawn from it. This is just stupid.

    However, I think there's a very strong possibility that companies in countries that are not signatories to the treaty will start producing these things which could then in turn be sold to Americans online and mailed to them.

    September 22, 2011 at 21:08 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Sorry, all UN member nations have already signed onto the Montreal Protocol. This is the last year for CFCs in medical products. You see international sellers with them right now cause it's not 2012 yet.

      September 23, 2011 at 03:04 | Report abuse |
  36. James

    When the first person dies due to an asthma attack because they could no longer get this the lawsuits will commence.

    September 22, 2011 at 21:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      You won't be able to, because the US is only finally implementing the Montreal Protocol that we signed onto and all of its amendments. We already dragged our feet along with China on that for as long as we could. The only suit that would be given merit would be against Armstrong Pharma for dragging their feet for the four years they were given in implementation, but instead they played the drug patent game like all the other pharmaceuticals. Not to mention, your hysteria is unwarranted because other nations like in the EU have already enacted it and they don't have lawsuits galore and asthmatics dying in droves. Also, your excuse would never hold up in court as it would be considered negligence on your part. The prescription inhalers, while certainly more expensive, are not ridiculously priced, and my cousin uses one. A court would never rule for the plaintiff, at least not here in California.

      September 22, 2011 at 21:38 | Report abuse |
  37. mrmartman

    Many people here are asking what are people with asthma to do if they can't afford to see a doctor. Simple, they are supposed to die. That's the hidden message of the tea Party. The elderly, the disabled, the unemployed, are all burdens on our society and need to be eliminated. My dad who spent almost 6 years in Dachau always believed that the Nazi Party would rise again. He was right, now they are called Tea Baggers.

    September 22, 2011 at 21:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. mightyfudge

    I've had asthma most of my life. I use a prescription inhaler, but I've always found comfort knowing that if mine was damaged, lost or stolen (yes, stolen) that in an emergency i could alwys go to nearest 24 hour supermarket to stay alive. guess il'll have to rethink that strategy. Anyone who does not have asthma should not be comenting on this issue. you dont know whats its like to fight for every breath.

    September 22, 2011 at 21:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Baldenario

      This is something that most people who never have had an asthma attack simply do not understand, but if you have ever had an asthma attack and such difficulty breathing that you could not say, "I cannot breathe" at the ER, then it certainly is helpful to know that you can stop at grocery store or somewhere and get some Primatine Mist as a backup . . .

      September 22, 2011 at 21:57 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      My cousin uses a prescription inhaler, but either way, you should know they are developing another OTC inhaler to replace PM. Armstrong just took too long getting started. They will probably only add a few bucks (hopefully, but you know those drug companies) like the aerosol industry did, since they only need to replace the propellant. The FDA recommends stocking up on some beforehand if you're still worried. And you shouldn't be relying on it regularly anyways, some commentators have said it damages your lungs over time, and the product page itself also says it.

      September 23, 2011 at 00:19 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      I think you should both write to Armstrong and ask them why they didn't start on the replacement sooner, and when they'll be ready with the replacement. I think asthmatics would feel better knowing when it will be in drugstores, and to know how much PM to stock up on.

      September 23, 2011 at 00:21 | Report abuse |
  39. mikes

    So, something which has a positive effective effect on many people's health is being banned because it also has an imperceptibly negative effect on other people's health?

    Sounds like the idiots in our government in action.

    I'd be that the government (military, under the guise of "national security") releases more CFCs into the atmosphere in a day, than all the asthma inhalers do in a year.

    September 22, 2011 at 21:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Sorry for your conspiracy theory, but the CFC level is now being monitored by the UN, and every country signed the treaty called the Montreal Protocol to phase them out entirely.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:19 | Report abuse |
  40. Glen Allen

    The deal was made by the FDA in 2008, you know, when Bush was still President and his appointees were running the show. Instead of blaming lib activism blame bought politicians (of both parties) looking to pay back Big Pharma for big donations.

    September 22, 2011 at 21:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Fred

      Oh Jesus, you libs just can't get enough of blaming Bush for things that are so obviously not his fault.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:57 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Actually, Bush was the one who signed the Montreal Amendment to the Montreal Protocol in 2003, updating the phase-out schedule, and which is why the CFCs are getting replaced next year. So whether you want to blame him or thank him is up to you, but he did do it.

      September 23, 2011 at 00:14 | Report abuse |
  41. Baldenario

    Epinephrine has some pretty gnarly cardiovascular side effects, but it is better than nothing in an emergency . . .

    Basically, Primatine Mist is the rescue inhaler for all the folks who cannot afford a $150 doctor's appointment, battery of asthma tests (very expensive), and "new" environmentally friendly HFA albuterol inhalers . . .

    The amount of CFC propellant in an old-style albuterol inhaler and Primatine Mist inhaler is less than the amount that fits into a sewing thimble or a single pinto bean, if it is that much, since most of the contents of the canisters are medicine rather than propellant . . .

    Another problem with the "new" inhalers is that they require priming if not used regularly or at least once a week, which maps to spraying them four times to "prime" the medicine into the nebulizer, and they need to be cleaned regularly, as well, which was not the case with the old style albuterol inhalers, although it usually was a good idea to rinse the mouthpiece of a Primatine Mist inhaler regularly, since epinephrine has a different consistency from albuterol . . .

    The instructions for the "new" HFA albuterol inhalers states that you have to clean the mouthpiece with warm water and then let it air dry for 12 hours, so if you need to use a rescue inhaler more frequently than every 12 hours, then you need to have two of them, which was not the case with the old-style albuterol inhalers, since they never clogged and were so easy that a child could use them safely without needing to perform an elaborate ritual or to know what to do if the "new" inhaler is not working at a time when you are having a severe asthma attack and literally cannot breathe . . .

    This is so completely and totally stupid that it is beyond mind-boggling, and it provides a significant clue to the harsh realities of health care at the dawn of the early-21st century . . .

    In the grand scheme of everything, if you have been using a Primatine Mist rescue inhaler for more than a few months, then you probably have asthma and need to be evaluated by a medical doctor, since there are much better medications for controlling asthma, although they are expensive and are not getting any less expensive . . .

    If you use a Serevent diskus and a "new" albuterol inhaler every 30 days, then without any prescription insurance this maps to approximately $250 a month, which is approximately three times what it cost a decade ago . . .

    Serevent is excellent, unless you happen to be of African ancestry in which case there are other medications that do not have "sudden unexplained death" as a side effect, but so what . . .

    The other problem with the "new" inhalers is that by virtue of being redesigned they have patent protection, which maps to no generics and basically means that the drug companies can charge whatever they desire, at least until 2012 when some of the patent protections begin to expire . . .

    If you can spend $3,500 to $4,500 per year to control your asthma using the best available medicines, then there certainly are some outstanding medicines, but for a lot of folks this simply costs too much because they are poor, which is what makes this new FDA regulation so asinine, and for reference while there is the Montreal treaty or whatever, it is the FDA specifically that is doing this, since the FDA has the ability and authority to make exceptions for medical needs . . .

    And as it always tends to happen, stuff like this coincides with Christmas, which for several million poor people who have asthma maps to "Merry Christmas from the FDA: You get to spend $3,500 to $4,500 on doctors, x-rays, laboratory tests, and 'green' prescription asthma medicine", really . . .

    Really! 😮

    September 22, 2011 at 21:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      BTW, the FDA is simply implementing the Montreal Protocol, a treaty we signed along with every other country in the world, who apparently don't care for asthmatics, right? You can thank the world. And my cousin makes minimum wage but uses a prescription inhaler, so I doubt the costs are as high as you claim. Care to enlighten us?

      September 22, 2011 at 22:13 | Report abuse |
    • Baldenario

      @CW: Regarding the costs of doctor visits, x-rays, radiologist interpretation fees, respiratory treatments, and prescription medicines, if you have a telephone, make a few calls and verify the information I provided yourself . . .

      The dollar amounts I provided are for folks who do not have any health care insurance and have no choice but to pay the full price (no co-pay and all that negotiated stuff) . . .

      None of this information is the least bit mysterious or difficult to find . . .

      September 23, 2011 at 09:37 | Report abuse |
  42. Kat Gordon

    This makes me sooo angry!!! Why do they continue to pick on asthmatics while aerosol hair sprays and other things continue to be sold? This isn't about the ozone, this is just another attempt to hurt low income people with disabilities who can not afford the new expensive inhalers. Damn this government anyway!!!

    September 22, 2011 at 22:05 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      CFC in aerosols have already been replaced decades ago. Where have you been living? CFCs are not the only propellant available. The drug companies have been playing the drug game again to make more money. If anything, they got more time than anyone else to replace CFCs.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:17 | Report abuse |
    • lolwut

      cw: "The drug companies have been playing the drug game again to make more money. If anything, they got more time than anyone else to replace CFCs."

      Do you have proof that drug companies have been playing games, or is it just a dogmatic assumption on your part?

      Is it possible that other propellants would interfere with the chemical mixture used in inhalers?

      September 22, 2011 at 23:06 | Report abuse |
  43. Chicago Joe

    According to the manufacturer's website they are working on a new CFC-free inhaler that will still have epinephrine as the active ingredient but they don't expect it to get through the approval process before Dec. 31 so they are advising users to stock up on the existing product. Obviously they should have started sooner but that's water under the bridge now. They may be going away but (one presumes) they will be back.

    September 22, 2011 at 22:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      See, and all that hysteria and panic for nothing. It was Armstrong Pharma's job to anticipate this for their patients all along anyways.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:15 | Report abuse |
    • David

      I suspect this is being done to maximize profits. If a new patent is granted for the same epinephrine in the same bottle with a different propellant, the later it's approved, the longer the manufacturer will have a monopoly on making it. While there may be some profits lost if the new product isn't approved by January 1, 2012, this will probably be offset by the spike of those who are stocking up on the old product.

      December 28, 2011 at 01:56 | Report abuse |
  44. Kat Gordon

    @CW Good for your cousin but not every one can afford it. The last time I tried to get one, it was more than a $100 and I go through at least one a week! Just because SOME people will or can find a way to pay for them, doesn't mean everyone can. Asthmatics are being singled out here and we ALL KNOW IT!!!

    September 22, 2011 at 22:21 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      I doubt the entire world was singling out asthmatics since every country has already signed up to phase them out by treaty. Many countries already have and they haven't run into this problem. The real problem, and the big picture, is that our healthcare system is broken. Also, another user said this so I Googled it, Armstrong Pharmas is developing a CFC-free version of PM they claim will also be OTC and as affordable. Why they didn't do it sooner you'll have to ask them, but the FDA recommends you just stock up on the current PM which is still in production until next year or see a doctor if you're still worried. You can find out more and other info to help asthmatics on the FDA site. Think they're telling people not to panic.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:35 | Report abuse |

    I have used Primitene Mist for many years as I have suffered from Asthma all my life...it has literally saved me from an expensive emergancy ambulance ride and hospitalization and possibly my life!!!!. Yes I use the doctor prescribed Flovent to help control my asthma, at a $44 co-pay. However Flovent is not designed as an emergency inhaler. I carry my Primitene with me at all times as I never know when an attack will happen. It is no fun not being able to breath. NOW FOR MY VENT: If as others have refered to above in this blog about the CFC's affecting the atmosphere, how can that be since it is going into a persons lungs 1st!!? I have had health insurance for many years but still use the Primitene BECAUSE IT WORKS and I don't have to wait for a presciption to be filled, or make a med check doctor appointment if I run out. The $14 I spend on the OTC Primitene, THAT WORKS, is being replaced by what, and at what cost and consquence to the asthma sufferer who is having an acute attack? Will the replacement be as immediate in restoring breathing as the Primitene? When during the recent Tea Party Republican debate that was aired; some in the audience applauded at the mention of; if you can't afford health insurance or to pay yor health cost out of pocket then die (not the exact words but the meaning was v-e-r-y clear to any average listener) is this what America is coming to? This is not the America I grew up to know nor what my Christian faith has taught me!!!! GET THE NEED FOR MORE PROFIT AND MONEY, AND THE POLITICS OUT OF THE PICTURE AND FOCUS INSTEAD ON THE REAL AMERICA - THE MEN,WOMEN AND CHILDREN ON WHOSE BACKS THE FEW ARE PLAYING THIER SILLY, SPOILED BRAT, MONEY-HUNGRY GAMES!!

    September 22, 2011 at 22:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Kat Gordon

      It's all about money isn't it!? Even at the expense of a hundreds of thousands of low income asthmatics... Shameful and disgusting!!!

      September 22, 2011 at 22:38 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      There's going to be an affordable OTC replacement for PM that's CFC-free. It's been in the works since earlier this year. Just stock up on the current one if you're worried the new one won't be finished in time.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:46 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      Armstrong should have began work on the PM replacement earlier; all of this trouble would never have happened.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:50 | Report abuse |
  46. James

    This is nonsense. The Feds must weigh the balance between saving an asthmatic sufferer and depleting the ozone layer(?) with the use of these inhalers. Ron Paul seems to be the only one really advocating minimal government intrusion in our lives.

    September 22, 2011 at 22:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Regardless, it is a signed 2 decade old treaty that must be implemented. And take a deep breath and calm down, since they never banned PM itself, or the medicine, only the propellant. I'm sure you want to risk the possibility of giving yourself, other people, your kids, and future generations an increased chance of getting melanoma simply because you desperately wanted CFCs in your medications.

      September 23, 2011 at 02:03 | Report abuse |
  47. Meki60

    This is green garbage, I hope you all get asthma and have to treat it with Gore's fa-ts

    September 22, 2011 at 22:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      You act like this is the same issue as global warming. Grow a brain, do some independent research and figure it all out. The ozone damage caused by CFCs is a PROVEN fact that scientists don't debate. Even companies such as DuPont and other aerosol companies admitted decades ago that it's true. The entire world even agrees and have signed the Montreal Protocol. Hell, even Bush believes it, he signed the amendment to it for the new phasing out schedule in 2003. You sure must be dumber than Bush.

      September 22, 2011 at 22:53 | Report abuse |
    • Meki60

      CW: you must put it in perspective, the volume of CFCs form inhalers is minimal and the benefit is maximum. You green guys can never get it. How bout if Dupont was tired of others copying their compound after the patent expired and manufactured this situation to rid the market of copys? That is as far fetched as your Primatene affecting the worldwide atmosphere.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:01 | Report abuse |
    • Meki60

      CW: also you green nuts want these CFls for lighting, but they contain mercury. Is it different? or do you now say that its only a small amount of mercury? How small is small if 3 million households use them?

      September 22, 2011 at 23:04 | Report abuse |
    • Meki60

      CW: waiting for an answer

      September 22, 2011 at 23:07 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      LOL If I'm a green nut for agreeing only on the CFCs because there is a mountain of hard evidence, you must be a conspiracy nut. Apparently, all the brightest minds in the world, nations, leaders, businesses are in a massive conspiracy on an international scale. You must be smarter than everyone on the planet. All hail Meki60! The fact that they've kept this up for decades that even got all entire major industries to affirm the fact and replace the CFCs must be all a big lie. Good thing they began the phasing in the 80s so you're no living with melanoma no ozone layer. Do you even realize how big the hole over the Southern Hemisphere really was?

      September 22, 2011 at 23:14 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      And notice I didn't say a single thing supporting global warming and you immediately start with the name-calling. How immature.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:15 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      So Meki, what's this "secret" evidence that CFCs don't do anything that apparently you know and nobody else does? Or are you just reiterating talking points?

      September 22, 2011 at 23:19 | Report abuse |
  48. Cat

    Something that goes unmentioned is that since the active ingredient in Primatine is epinephrine, for those people who are allergic to insect stings, the Primatine Mist can be literally a LIFESAVER. If you don't have your epi-pen near you but do have a primatine mist inhaler you can get to a phone or wait for the ambulance to transport you to the hospital. My sting allergy has only recently risen to the point that I really need to keep an epi-pen with me. But I don't get stung enough to justify the EXPENSE of an epi-pen so I'm in a catch-22. Taking a shot from a Primatine Mist inhaler and popping some Benedryl gives me enough time to assess whether I need to get to the ER or not.

    September 22, 2011 at 22:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Meki60

      I feel pain for you and others like you. Our gov is no longer for the people. can you order this from another country? or visit and stockup?

      September 22, 2011 at 22:56 | Report abuse |
    • Terry

      When the Pharmaceutical Companies signed on to support the Healthcare Bill, the government had to agree to block "Reimportation of Drugs" which means that people cannot purchase drugs from foreign countries and have those drugs shipped back into the United States. The question everyone should be asking is quite simple "Why are pharmaceuticals sold in the United States 60-100% more expensive than the same drugs sold around the world?". Profit and Greed. Poor people will suffer, but those profits will continue to roll in, year-over-year.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:33 | Report abuse |
    • CW

      As another user stated, while it is an ingredient it's more concentrated in the Epi-pen. You'll need around 20 inhalations of PM to get the same effect. I doubt someone having a seizure could effectively inhale those 20 times, and do so in time.

      September 23, 2011 at 01:58 | Report abuse |
  49. Truth Serum

    Here’s the truth. Primatene is gone. It ain’t comin’ back. Armstrong has, and will continue, to drag everyone along, while doubling the price of the product, and then fail to deliver on an HFA OTC version. Why? Because it’s money in their pocket.
    This is the pharmaceutical industry in concert with the FDA, capitalizing on a BS “green” requirement, that the US could have opted out of it wanted to, just so that the poor and an insured can be forced to spend more, and so that the insured can pay higher co-pays for a non-generic, while their premiums go up at the same time.

    Feel that? Yeah, that’s what if feels like to get screwed. The only solution to this is cutting taxes, kids. Right. That would fix this, right?

    September 22, 2011 at 23:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      Armstrong reiterated their promise to release an affordable OTC version a few times this year, just need to make them make good on their word. And the government is only doing it because they have to due to having signed the international Montreal Protocol treaty in '88 and the updated phasing schedule amendment in '03. They should just delay the phasing and prod along Armstrong to replace the propellant.

      September 22, 2011 at 23:25 | Report abuse |
  50. AC

    OK. Here's the real story on CFC's. They are heavier than air. That's the reason they were used for fire suppression systems for years. Now to even theoretically react with the Ozone layer, they need to be introduced into the upper stratosphere where there is little air density to start with. There is just no way that CFC's can be dispersed into the stratosphere by natural processes. It would be like saying that I can fill a balloon with lead and it will float like one filled with helium. The whole Ozone CFC thing is theoretical lab speculation.

    September 22, 2011 at 23:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • CW

      And just where did you get that info? Some private individual's website? Fox News talking points? Hell, even they have accepted it as fact and haven't debated it in decades. DuPont and other aerosol companies admitted in the 80s, after fighting the science for years, that it was indeed a fact that CFCs destroy the ozone. Why do you think the massive aerosol industry agreed to ban them? They even supported the worldwide ban, FYI. Also, it even has the consensus of the scientific community, nations, world leaders, even religious figures for decades. But apparently, everyone else is wrong, you're more intelligent and respectable than all of them, etc. Either that or you know some "secret" evidence of otherwise, which no one else knows! Let's hear it!

      September 23, 2011 at 01:07 | Report abuse |
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