Symbicort (budesonide and formoterol)

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Symbicort {AstraZeneca}

Generic Name

budesonide and formoterol inhalation, pronounced bue DES oh nide and for MOE te ro

Symbicort 200 turbuhaler (Formoterol Fumarate Dihydrate, Budesonide)

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Symbicort 100 turbuhaler
(Formoterol Fumarate Dihydrate, Budesonide)
RX Prescription Required  + more info
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Symbicort 200 turbuhaler
(Formoterol Fumarate Dihydrate, Budesonide)
RX Prescription Required  + more info
Strength & Quantity
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RX Prescription Required  + more info
Disclaimer

The information contained in this 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 Symbicort?

Symbicort can help to prevent bronchospasm in patients with asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, also called COPD. The combination of budesonide and formoterol works effectively together, as budesonide is a steroid which reduces the inflammation in your body and formoterol is a bronchodilator that relaxes the muscles in your airways to improve breathing.

Symbicort may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

 

Key Facts About Symbicort

PREGNANCY/ BREASTFEEDING: It is not known whether Symbicort can be harmful to an unborn baby. You should tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant before using Symbicort. Do not use Symbicort if you are breast-feeding as it is not known if this medication passes into breast milk.

Do not take Symbicort if you are experiencing an asthma attack that has already begun. Symbicort can increase the risk of an asthma related death. You should use Symbicort exactly as your doctor has instructed you to.

The long-term use of steroids like Symbicort can lead to bone loss, also known as osteoporosis. This is more probable if you smoke, do not exercise, do not get enough vitamin D or calcium in your diet, or if you have a family history of osteoporosis. Discuss your risk factors for osteoporosis with your doctor.

Symbicort should not be given to a child under 12 years of age, as this medication is a steroid and can affect the growth rate of a child. If your child is using Symbicort and you are concerned about his or her growth rate you should talk to your doctor.

 

Before You Take Symbicort

You should not take Symbicort if you are allergic to budesonide (Entocort, Pulmicort, Rhinocort) or formoterol (Foradil, Perforomist).

Tell your doctor if you have heart disease or high blood pressure, epilepsy or another seizure disorder, diabetes, herpes infection of the eyes or any active infection.

You should talk to your doctor before taking Symbicort if you have any active infections (including tuberculosis, shingles, herpes infections), an electrolyte imbalance, low potassium levels in your blood or a thyroid disorder.

You should not use a second form of formoterol, like Foradil or Performist or use a similar inhaled bronchodilator like salmeterol (Serevent, Advair) or arformoterol (Brovana) unless your doctor has told you to do so.

Symbicort contains a steroid medication. Steroid medications can lower your immune response and reduce your ability fight infections. You should avoid being around people who are sick or have infections. If you are exposed to the chicken pox or measles you must call your doctor immediately for preventative treatment, as these conditions can be serious or even fatal in people who are taking Symbicort.

 

Symbicort Drug Interactions

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

  • antibiotics like azithromycin (Zithromax), clarithromycin (Biaxin), erythromycin (E.E.S., EryPed, Ery-Tab, Erythrocin, Pediazole) and telithromycin (Ketek)
  • antidepressants like amitriptyline (Elavil, Vanatrip, Limbitrol), doxepin (Sinequan, Silenor) and nortriptyline (Pamelor)
  • antifungal medications like ketoconazole (Nizoral) and itraconazole (Sporanox)
  • beta-blockers like atenolol (Tenormin, Tenoretic), carvedilol (Coreg), labetalol (Normodyne, Trandate), metoprolol (Dutoprol, Lopressor, Toprol), nadolol (Corgard), propranolol (Inderal, InnoPran) and sotalol (Betapace)
  • diuretics or water pills
  • MAO inhibitors like furazolidone (Furoxone), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar) and tranylcypromine (Parnate)

Other drugs you take that are not listed may interact with Symbicort. 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 Symbicort

Use Symbicort exactly as your doctor has prescribed. Do not use this medication in larger or smaller amounts, or for shorter or longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label exactly. Symbicort comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use. You should follow these instructions carefully.

You should always rinse your mouth after using the Symbicort inhaler device.

You need to prime the Symbicort inhaler device before you use it for the first time.

To prime: Shake the inhaler well for at least 5 seconds before each spray of the device.

· Pump 2 test sprays into the air, aiming away from your face. Be certain to shake the inhaler for at least 5 seconds before each spray.

· Prime again if: If you have not used your inhaler for 7 days or longer,

· or if it has been dropped,

You should not attempt to clean or take apart the Symbicort inhaler device. You must throw out the device when your medication runs out. The dose indicator on the inhaler will turn red when there are 10 doses left in the device. Do not float your inhaler in water.

Be certain to refill your Symbicort prescription before you run out of this medication completely. You should always use the new device provided with the medication when you get your prescription filled.

You may not experience total symptom relief for up to 2 weeks while taking Symbicort. Do not stop taking this medication. Tell your doctor if you do not notice any symptom improvement after the first week of treatment with Symbicort. Tell your doctor immediately if you symptoms get worse while taking this medication.

Keep all of your scheduled appointments with your doctor, so he or she can evaluate your progress on a regular basis.

If you have surgery, are ill, are under stress, or if you have recently had an asthma attack your dose may need to be changed. You should not change your dose or medication schedule without advice from your doctor telling you to do so.

You should wear a medical alert tag, bracelet, or carry an ID card to let others know that you may are using an oral steroid in an emergency situation.

Contact your doctor right away if you feel that Symbicort or any of your asthma medications are not working as well as they usually do. Sometimes an increased need for medication could be an early sign of a serious asthma attack. Check your numbers on your peak flow meter at home and call your doctor if your numbers are lower than normal.

Symbicort must be stored at room temperature and away from moisture, light, and heat. You should always keep the cover on your Symbicort inhaler device when you are not using it. Be sure to keep your medicine canister away from open flame and high heat, as the canister may explode if it gets too hot. You should not puncture or burn an empty inhaler canister.

If you miss a dose of Symbicort 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.

 

Symbicort Side Effects

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

  • * allergic reaction such as difficult breathing, hives, or swelling of your face, lips, throat or tongue
  • * asthma symptoms that worsen
  • * blurred vision
  • * chest pain with pounding heartbeats
  • * eye pain or seeing halos around lights
  • * hypertension (high blood pressure) signs, with symptoms like a severe headache, blurry vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats and seizure(s)
  • * patches or sores that are white in your mouth or throat
  • * signs of an infection, like a fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, easy bruising or bleeding and unusual weakness;
  • * tremors or nervousness

Less serious side effects of Symbicort may include:

  • · back pain
  • · changes in your voice
  • · diarrhea
  • · muscle or joint pain
  • · nausea
  • · stuffy nose
  • · upset stomach
  • · vomiting

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

 

Symbicort Description and Dosing

Symbicort is available as a metered-dose inhaler which contains a combination of budesonide (80 or 160 mcg) and formoterol (4.5 mcg), as an inhalation aerosol in the following two strengths: 80/4.5 and 160/4.5. Each dosage strength contains 60 or 120 actuations per/canister. Each strength of Symbicort is supplied with a red plastic actuator with a gray dust cap.

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

 

Ingredients in Symbicort

Symbicort 80/4.5 and Symbicort 160/4.5 each contain micronized budesonide and micronized formoterol fumarate dihydrate for oral inhalation only.

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Disclaimer

The information contained in this 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.