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Ventolin Inhaler

What is the Ventolin Inhaler?

Prescribed by doctors as a "reliever" inhaler, a Ventolin inhaler is used to help relieve the symptoms of asthma. It quickly relaxes the muscles in the lungs making it much easier to breathe, thanks to its main ingredient salbutamol.

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How does the Ventolin Inhaler work?

Improving your breathing within five minutes, Salbutamol usually relieves symptoms of asthma for around four to six hours. If you are using your Ventolin inhaler on a regular basis, we recommend having your breathing checked by a medical professional, as there may be better ways of managing your condition – this should only be used as a short-acting medicine.

If your asthma is stable, the Ventolin inhaler may be well suited to you – you should keep it on you at all times in case of an attack. Use your inhaler 10-15 minutes before exposing yourself to the elements that trigger your asthma – these can include pollen, house dust and exercise.

This inhaler is referred to as an "Evohaler" or "Accuhaler". These names purely reflect that there are no CFC propellants within the inhalers and are just part of the brand name.

The "Evohaler" is a standard inhaler device, whereas the "Accuhaler" is a circular container storing dry power. Some people find the "Accuhaler” easier to use as there is no need to synchronise pushing the inhaler's button and breathing, like you would with a normal inhaler.

If you have any concerns about what to do in the case of an asthma attack, speak with your doctor or asthma nurse.

How to use the Ventolin Inhaler

The Ventolin (salbutamol) Evohaler contains 100 micrograms of salbutamol per inhalation. The Ventolin (salbutamol) Accuhaler contains 200 micrograms of salbutamol per inhalation.

To relieve asthma symptoms, inhale 100 to 200 micrograms when required – this is the standard dosage for adults. To prevent the onset of asthma symptoms, take 200 micrograms approximately 10-15 minutes before being exposed to a potential trigger such as an allergen, or physical exercise.

If you are using more than eight inhalations of the Evohaler, or four inhalations of the Accuhaler in 24 hours, speak with your doctor or asthma nurse. Your asthma may not be being appropriately controlled and could be better managed.

Although your doctor, pharmacist or asthma nurse will have already shown you how to use an inhaler, reading up on essential inhaler techniques is vitally important. You'll find a great guide on Asthma UK's website – click here to view – which covers the different types of asthma inhalers.

Is the Ventolin Inhaler suitable for me?

Due to its ingredients and how it functions, there are certain circumstances where using the Ventolin inhaler would not be recommended, or should be used with caution – for example, if you have an allergy to salbutamol or any of the active ingredients. Women who are pregnant or are breastfeeding, those under the age of 18 and people with worsening asthma symptoms may also be advised that Ventolin isn't the right inhaler for them. If you have thyrotoxicosis (hyperthyroidism), a heart disease (angina, heart failure, or heart rhythm problems, for example), or suffer from low potassium levels, your doctor may advise a different course of treatment.

Whether it’s prescribed or bought from a pharmacy, you need to make your doctor aware of any other treatments you are taking. If you’re taking any "beta blockers" such as propranolol; theophylline or aminophylline; steroids; digoxin; and atomoxetine, you should let your doctor know during your consultation. Give your doctor a full picture of your health and the state of your asthma when you speak with them. This will help to decide which course of treatment is recommended to you.

What are the side effects of the Ventolin Inhaler?

Like all medicines, Ventolin has the potential to cause side.Muscular tremors, headaches and an increasing heart rate are three of the more common side effects. Less common side effects include heart rhythm disturbances and palpitations, an irritated throat or mouth, cramping muscles and a lowering of potassium levels. Immediately use a different type of "reliever" inhaler if you start to wheeze a lot more after using your inhaler and seek medical advice.

It's important to read the leaflet enclosed with your Ventolin inhaler before starting any course of treatment. Here, you'll find full details on the product and a full list of side effects to look out for. You can read the leaflets online below: