Symbicort is a new medication used to treat both COPD and Asthma. Symbicort works immediately, and can relieve symptoms in as little as five minutes.
Symbicort should be used in conjunction with a rescue inhaler, as it is a long-term maintenance medication, and will not be effective when used as a rescue inhaler. It is important to remember that asthma controller medicines should not be used to treat sudden symptoms. A rescue inhaler should be used as directed to treat sudden symptoms.
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Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a common lung condition resulting in chronic bronchitis, emphysema or both. COPD damages the small air passages in your lungs, which makes it difficult for air to get in or out of your lungs.
Asthma causes the air passages in your lungs to swell, making it difficult for you to breathe. Uncontrolled swelling in your airways increases your sensitivity to triggers such as dust, pollen and smoke. Exposure to those triggers, or the swelling on its own causes the muscles in your lungs to contract making it difficult to breathe. It can also cause wheezing, tightness of the chest and coughing.
Common side effects of Symbicort are irritation of the nose and throat, headache, sore throat, sinus infection and upset stomach.
It is important to take Symbicort as prescribed. The common dosage is two puffs, twice daily, once in the morning and once in the evening.
It is important not to take more than four puffs per day. You can monitor that you are getting the correct amount of medicine by monitoring how long the inhaler is lasting. With proper use the inhaler should last for approximately 30 days.
Caring for the Inhaler
You should clean the mouthpiece of your inhaler every seven days. You can do this by removing the cover, and using a cloth to wipe the inside and outside of the mouthpiece. You should not submerge the inhaler in water or try to take it apart.
Your inhaler should be discarded after 30 days of use, or within three months of being removed from the foil package. Do not attempt to make the inhaler last longer, because you will not be getting the correct amount of medication into your system, which is essential to your treatment.
Is Symbicort Safe?
Symbicort is safe, and is approved for use in patients 12 years of age and older. It should not be used as a primary treatment, as a rescue inhaler is still necessary. It should not be used by people sensitive to formoterol. Patients with suppressed immune systems should not use Symbicort, as they will be at an increased risk of developing infections.
Symbicort should not be used by pregnant women.
How is Symbicort Different?
Symbicort is different from similar medications because it contains both Budesonide and Formoterol.
Budesonide is an anti-inflammatory that prevents inflammation and swelling in the airways.
Formoterol is a long-acting beta-adrenergic agonist, which works quickly to dilate the blood vessels in the airways, promoting the flow of air.
The two medications work together to achieve the optimum conditions for your lungs to function at their maximum capacity.