An inhaler that helps asthmatics and the atmosphere

Click, click. The sound of the top of a ballpoint pen against the table. A familiar sound at a boring meeting. Click, click. Suddenly, a researcher realises he may be onto something.  

The idea that occurred to the researcher at the meeting marks the beginning of a product development project that takes several years. The mechanism of a ballpoint pen is the model for a new type of dispenser, and the Easyhaler inhaler for asthmatics is introduced in 1993. The new product has three goals: accurate dosage, ease of use and a propellant-free preparation.

Freons provoke heated discussion in the early 1990s because of their detrimental effect on the ozone layer. Their use is still allowed in the production of drugs, but a legal amendment is already in sight. Of the asthma inhalants available for sale in Finland, 70 per cent still contain freons.

“Our Easyhaler device is arriving in stores at a time when freons are a hot topic, but there is a lack of handy mechanical inhalers. The competition no longer involves the actual asthma medicines. It has more to do with engineering skills and device development,” said Antti Koivisto, Marketing Director at Orion, in 1993.

“The market competition is tough, and Orion is facing several global giants,” said Koivisto. However, he was convinced that Easyhaler would hold its own. He was right: today, products in the Easyhaler family are among Orion’s highest-selling preparations globally.