Sunday, 24 March 2019

Using an asthma inhaler correctly - updated

You have to take off the cap, shake the inhaler for three to five seconds and connect it to the spacer (a chamber between the inhaler and the patient’s mouth that holds the drug suspended and makes it easier to breathe it in).

Then you are supposed to exhale completely, and put the mouthpiece or mask in or around your mouth correctly, forming a tight seal.

Then you release the medication from the inhaler by pressing the canister down, breathe in slowly and deeply through the spacer (for spacers with a whistle, you do not want to hear the whistle), and hold your breath for 10 seconds.

Finally, you exhale again - and then you wait a minute and repeat the process.

In a new study, 84% of the patients did not wait the 30 seconds that the researchers felt was the absolute minimum time between inhalations. More than 50% waited less than 15 seconds. Patients not using the inhalers correctly may not derive the full benefits of the drugs.


You may want to read There are 7 steps to use an asthma inhaler correctly – have you been wrong?