Steroid inhaler types

We take great care to make sure that the information in this leaflet is correct and up-to-date. However, medicines can be used in different ways for different patients. It is
important that you ask the advice of your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure about something. This leaflet is about the use of these medicines in the UK, and may not apply
to other countries. The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), the Neonatal and Paediatric Pharmacists Group (NPPG), WellChild and the contributors and
editors cannot be held responsible for the accuracy of information, omissions of information, or any actions that may be taken as a consequence of reading this leaflet.

Nebulisers are machines that turn the liquid form of your short-acting bronchodilator medicines into a fine mist, like an aerosol. You breathe this in with a face mask or a mouthpiece. Nebulisers are no more effective than normal inhalers. However, they are extremely useful in people who are very tired (fatigued) with their breathing, or in people who are very breathless. Nebulisers are used mainly in hospital for severe attacks of asthma when large doses of inhaled medicines are needed. They are used less commonly than in the past, as modern spacer devices are usually just as good as nebulisers for giving large doses of inhaled medicines. You do not need any co-ordination to use a nebuliser - you just breathe in and out, and you will breathe in the medicine.

This asthma inhaler type usually contains steroids which are inhaled to help in controlling the symptoms. They also have been proven to be effective in patients who have not found relief when using a daily inhaled treatment. It is not recommended that you use long-acting bronchodilators as a long term remedy for asthma. The medication in these inhalers works in a very similar way to that in relievers, and can work for up to 12 hours after use. These include salmeterol (available as Serevent- green inhaler) and formoterol (available as Foradil and Atimos).

Combination Inhalers
Corticosteroids and long-acting bronchodilators are also available in combinations for ease of use and efficacy. There is evidence that use of long-acting bronchodilators without an inhaled corticosteroid increases the risk of death during an asthma attack, which makes combination metered dose inhaler medications more popular. Brand names available for metered dose inhalers combining both a steroid and bronchodilator are Advair and Symbicort. Because of the corticosteroid component, these inhalers should not be discontinued suddenly without your Physician’s advice.

Steroid inhaler types

steroid inhaler types

Combination Inhalers
Corticosteroids and long-acting bronchodilators are also available in combinations for ease of use and efficacy. There is evidence that use of long-acting bronchodilators without an inhaled corticosteroid increases the risk of death during an asthma attack, which makes combination metered dose inhaler medications more popular. Brand names available for metered dose inhalers combining both a steroid and bronchodilator are Advair and Symbicort. Because of the corticosteroid component, these inhalers should not be discontinued suddenly without your Physician’s advice.

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