Firm applies for prostate treatment to be over the counter

Enlarged prostate treatment tamsulosin could be made available over the counter (OTC), following an application by Boehringer-Ingelheim to have Flomax Relief 0.4mg switched from prescription-only to pharmacy status.

Pharmacists would ensure patients had hallmark functional urinary tract symptoms and rule out ‘red flag’ symptoms before providing a 14-day supply. Supply could be continued for up to 10 weeks if the treatment is successful before a diagnosis by a doctor would be required.

Patients would be encouraged to sign up with one pharmacy to ensure continuity of care and would be referred to their GP if treatment was not successful or if they exhibited ‘red flag’ symptoms, such as blood in urine, fever or excessive thirst.

A consultation on the application is open on www.mhra.gov.uk until 15 January next year.

tom.moberly@haymarket.com

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