This medicine contains the active ingredient salbutamol,
which is a type of medicine known as a short-acting beta 2 agonist.
It works by acting on receptors in the lungs called beta 2 receptors.
Stimulation of these receptors causes the muscles in the airways
to relax, allowing the airways to open. In conditions where there
is narrowing of the airways, such as asthma, emphysema and bronchitis,
it is difficult for air to get in and out of the lungs. By opening
the airways, salbutamol makes it easier to breathe. Salbutamol
is most commonly taken using an inhaler device. Inhaling the medicine
allows it to act directly in the lungs where it is needed most.
It also reduces the potential for side effects occurring in other
parts of the body, as the amount absorbed into the blood through
the lungs is lower than if it is taken by mouth. Salbutamol when
used as an inhaler is known as a reliever. This is because it
works very quickly to relieve asthma attacks or shortness of breath.
Salbutamol inhalers can also be used to open the airways shortly
before exercising. Salbutamol tablets are sometimes prescribed
if inhaled salbutamol is being used frequently to relieve shortness
of breath. The tablets are taken regularly to help keep the airways
open all the time and reduce the need for the inhaler.
What is it used for?
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
If this medicine fails to provide up to 3 hours relief from shortness
of breath, seek medical advice.
Inhalers may cause an unexpected increase in wheezing (paradoxical
bronchospasm) straight after using them. If this happens, stop
using the inhaler immediately and consult your doctor. The medicine
should be stopped and an alternative treatment found.
Blood potassium levels should be monitored in people with severe
asthma, as low oxygen levels in the blood (hypoxia) and various
asthma medicines, including this one, can lower blood potassium.
Use with caution in:
- Heart disease;
- High blood pressure;
- Irregular heart beats (arrhythmias).
Not to be used in:
- Known sensitivity or allergy to any ingredient.
This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to one or
any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist
if you have previously experienced such an allergy. If you feel
you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine
and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding
providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the
unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or
planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.
This medicine should be used with caution during pregnancy, and
only if the expected benefit to the mother is greater than the
possible risk to the foetus. Seek medical advice from your doctor.
This medicine passes into breast milk in small amounts. The effect
of this on the breastfed baby is unknown, therefore this medicine
should be used with caution in breastfeeding mothers. Discuss
with your doctor.
Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual
people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects
that are known to be associated with this medicine. Because a
side effect is stated here, it does not mean that all people using
this medicine will experience that or any side effect.
- Faster than normal heart beat (tachycardia);
- Unexpected narrowing of the airways (paradoxical bronchospasm);
- Low blood potassium level (hypokalaemia);
- Shaking, usually of the hands (tremor);
- Anxiety and restlessness;
- Awareness of your heart beat (heart palpitations).
The side effects listed above may not include all of the side
effects reported by the drug?s manufacturer. For more information
about any other possible risks associated with this medicine,
please read the information provided with the medicine or consult
your doctor or pharmacist.