Advair Diskus (fluticasone propionate and salmeterol)

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Brand Name

Advair Diskus {GlaxoSmithKline}

Generic Name

fluticasone propionate and salmeterol, pronounced Floo-TIK-a-sone/sal-MEE-ter-ol

Advair Diskus (Salmeterol (Salmeterol Xinafoate), Fluticasone Propionate)

Product (brand)
Strength & Quantity
Advair Diskus
(Salmeterol (Salmeterol Xinafoate), Fluticasone Propionate)
RX Prescription Required  + more info
Strength & Quantity
RX Prescription Required  + more info

Drug Guide


The information contained in the following drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

**All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.


What is Advair Diskus?

Advair Diskus is used to help prevent asthma attacks. Your doctor also may have prescribed Advair Diskus if you have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), to help prevent flare ups associated with conditions like chronic bronchitis or emphysema. Advair Diskus may also be prescribed for purposes not listed in this medication guide.


Key Facts About Advair Diskus

The 2 ingredients in Advair Diskus are fluticasone and salmeterol. Fluticasone is a steroid that can help prevent a release of substances in the body which may cause inflammation. Salmeterol is a bronchodilator and can help you by relaxing the muscles in your airways, therefore helping you to breathe better.

You should not use Advair Diskus to treat an asthma attack. If you use Advair Diskus during an asthma attack already in progress you may increase your risk of an asthma-related death.

Only use the dose of Advair Diskus that your doctor has prescribed for you, and do not use it for longer than your doctor recommends. Be sure to follow all of the instructions on your prescription to use Advair Diskus safely. Your doctor can answer any questions you may have about your individual risks, and benefits, for using Advair Diskus.

Advair Diskus is in FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether Advair Diskus can be harmful to an unborn baby. You should tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant before using Advair Diskus. Do not use Advair Diskus if you are breast-feeding as it is not known if Advair Diskus passes into breast milk.

Advair Diskus should not be given to children under age 4. Because Advair Diskus can affect growth in children you should talk to your doctor if your child is taking Advair Diskus and is not growing at a normal rate.

The long-term use of steroids, like fluticasone in Advair Diskus, can lead to osteoporosis, or bone loss. This risk is greater for people who have a family history of osteoporosis, smoke, do not exercise, or do not get enough calcium and vitamin D in their diet. Talk to your doctor if you believe you have any of these risk factors for potential bone loss while taking Advair Diskus.


Before You Take Advair Diskus

You should not take Advair Diskus if you are allergic to fluticasone (Flonase, Flovent) or salmeterol (Serevent),

You should talk to your doctor before taking Advair Diskus if you have an allergy to milk or milk proteins.

Do not take Advair Diskus if you are having an asthma attack or a severe COPD symptom.

If you have epilepsy or another seizure disorder you should not take Advair Diskus.

Tell your doctor if you have heart disease, high blood pressure, a thyroid disorder or liver disease before taking Advair Diskus.

If you have any type of infection or a weakened immune system you may not be a candidate to take Advair Diskus.

Tell your doctor before taking Advair Diskus if you have diabetes, glaucoma, tuberculosis or osteoporosis.

You should not use Advair Diskus along with a second form of salmeterol, like Serevent, or a similar inhaled bronchodilator, like formoterol or Foradil unless your doctor has instructed you to.


Advair Diskus Drug Interactions

You should inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following:

  • amiodarone (Cordarone)
  • antibiotics clarithromycin (Biaxin) or telithromycin (Ketek)
  • antidepressants like amitriptyline (Elavil, Vanatrip, Limbitrol), desipramine (Norpramin), fluoxetine (Prozac), nefazodone, and imipramine (Tofranil)
  • antifungal medications like ketoconazole (Nizoral) or itraconazole (Sporanox)
  • atazanavir (Reyataz)
  • atenolol (Tenormin)
  • carvedilol (Coreg)
  • diuretics (hydrochlorothiazide, furosemide)
  • indinavir (Crixivan)
  • Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir)
  • MAO inhibitors like isocarboxazid (Marplan), tranylcypromine (Parnate), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), and selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam)
  • nelfinavir (Viracept)
  • ritonavir (Norvir)
  • saquinavir (Invirase)

Other drugs you take that are not listed may interact with Advair Diskus. You should tell your doctor about all of the medications you use. This includes prescription drugs, vitamins, supplements and herbal products, and over the counter medications. You should not begin taking a new medication without telling your doctor first.


Directions for Taking Advair Diskus

Advair Diskus comes in a powder form that comes with a special inhaler device. This device is pre-loaded with blister packs, which contain measured doses of this medication. The device will open and load a blister each time you use the inhaler. You should not use this device with a spacer.

Advair HFA is an aerosol form of this medication, also composed of fluticasone and salmeterol. Advair HFA comes in a canister that you can use with an actuator inhaler device. You should use only the inhaler device that was provided to you with your Advair HFA prescription. You can use this device with a spacer.

Shake your Advair HFA inhaler for at least 5 seconds before you use each spray.

Rinse your mouth with water after using Advair Diskus or Advair HFA, to reduce your chance of developing a yeast infection in your mouth.

You should be sure to keep track of the number of sprays you have used, and throw away your Advair HFA canister after 120 sprays, even if it still appears to contain medicine in it.

If you are also taking steroid medication, in addition to Advair Diskus/Advair HFA it is important for you to taper off of the steroids slowly, and under your doctor’s supervision. Do not stop taking your steroid medications suddenly, or you risk experiencing adverse and unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Speak to your doctor about tapering your steroid use down safely.

You need to be aware that salmeterol may increase the risk of asthma-related death. Use only the prescribed dose of Advair Diskus (fluticasone and salmeterol), and do not use it for longer or shorter than your doctor recommends, or in alternate doses. Never use Advair Diskus inhalation to treat an asthma attack that has already started. It will not work fast enough. If you experience an asthma attack use only a fast-acting inhalation medication. Your doctor can help you determine the right fast-acting inhaler for you.

You should wear a medical alert ID or carry a medical ID card in case you may need an oral steroid in an emergency.

Use all of your medications as directed by your doctor. Talk with your doctor if your Advair Diskus is not working well in treating or preventing your asthma attacks. Do not change your dosage or medication schedule without advice from your doctor.

You should seek medical attention if you feel like your asthma medications are not working as well as they usually do. Sometimes an increased need for asthma medication could be an early warning sign of a future serious asthma attack. You should check your numbers with a peak flow meter at home, and let your doctor know immediately if your numbers are lower than normal.

Advair Diskus should be stored at between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C).

Be sure to keep the Advair HFA canister out of a car on a hot day, or away from an open flame. High heat can cause the canister to explode.

If you miss a dose of Advair Diskus you should attempt to take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose do not take the missed dose in addition to your regular dose.


Advair Diskus Side Effects

If you experience any of the following adverse effects you should stop taking Advair Diskus and seek emergency medical help immediately:

  • allergic reactions such as difficulty breathing, hives or swelling of your throat, face, tongue or lips
  • blurred vision
  • bronchospasms (such as wheezing, chest tightness, and trouble breathing)
  • eye pain
  • fast or uneven heart beats
  • fever and chills
  • halos around eyesight
  • restlessness and tremors
  • stabbing chest pain accompanied by a cough with yellow or green mucus
  • white patches or sores inside of your mouth or on your lips
  • worsening asthma symptoms

Less serious side effects may include:

  • cough
  • diarrhea
  • dizziness
  • dry mouth, nose or throat
  • headache
  • hoarseness or deepened voice
  • nausea
  • sinus pain
  • sore throat
  • stuffy nose
  • vomiting

It should be noted that this is not a complete list of possible side effects of Advair Diskus. You should contact your physician for a complete list and medical advice regarding these effects.


Advair Diskus Description and Dosing

Advair Diskus is available in the following doses:

In the United States:

  • Advair Diskus
  • Advair Diskus 100/50
  • Advair Diskus 250/50
  • Advair Diskus 500/50
  • Advair HFA

In Canada:

  • Advair
  • Advair Inhalation Aerosol

Advair Diskus is prescribed based on the individual need of each patient. Your doctor will tell you the right dose for you.

Adults and children over age 12 typically are prescribed two puffs in the morning and another two puffs in the evening, with both doses being 12 hours apart.

If you suspect that you have overdosed with Advair Diskus you should seek emergency help immediately.


Ingredients in Advair Diskus

Advair Diskus contains the combination of fluticasone propionate and salmeterol xinafoate. Advair Diskus 100/50, Advair Diskus 250/50, and Advair Diskus 500/50 are specially designed plastic devices which contain a double-foil blister strip of a powder formulation of fluticasone propionate and salmeterol xinafoate, intended for oral inhalation only. Each blister on the double-foil strip within the device contains 100, 250, or 500 mcg of microfine fluticasone propionate and 72.5 mcg of microfine salmeterol xinafoate salt, equivalent to 50 mcg of salmeterol base, in 12.5 mg of formulation containing lactose (which contains milk proteins). Each blister contains 1 complete dose of both medications.

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