Symbicort is a type of preventer inhaler used to treat asthma in adolescents aged 12-17 and COPD in adults. It combines two types of medicine: a corticosteroid called Budesonide which reduces lung inflammation and Formoterol fumarate dihydrate which belongs to a group of medicines called bronchodilators, relaxing and widening the blood vessels.
Symbicort needs to be used regularly to keep your symptoms at bay and prevent an asthma attack from occurring. The medicine works to control your asthma and ease inflammation which is why it's essential to keep taking it, even if you no longer have symptoms. This means that it is working.
The active ingredients contained in Seretide are budesonide and formoterol fumarate dihydrate.
The inactive ingredient is lactose.
Before using Symbicort, make sure you read the instructions thoroughly and use it as your doctor has shown you. Prepare the inhaler for first use by unscrewing the cap and hold it upright. Turn the red grip around to the other side as far as you can until it clicks and then turn it back the other way. When you are ready, repeat these steps and breathe out slowly. Seal your lips around the mouthpiece and inhale steadily. Move the inhaler away from your mouth and exhale slowly. Repeat this for each dose.
The standard dose of Symbicort is 1-2 puffs twice a day. This can be increased up to a maximum of 8 puffs a day. Always follow the instructions given by your doctor on how much to take. Your prescribed dose will depend on the severity of your symptoms.
If you forget a dose of Symbicort, then don't worry, simply take it as soon as you remember. If it's nearly time for your next dose then wait until then, don't double up the dose.
If you've taken more Symbicort than you were supposed to this won't cause you harm. It may mean you are more likely to experience side effects like oral thrush. Make sure you continue to use your inhaler as your doctor has prescribed. If you are worried about having taken too much Symbicort then speak to your GP or pharmacist.
Common side effects include:
Less common side effects include:
Rare side effects may include:
Do not use Symbicort if you are allergic to any of the ingredients.
Extra care should be taken if:
Always tell your doctor if you are taking any other medications to make sure that they won't interfere with each other. In particular, the following may interact with Symbicort:
Always rinse out your mouth after each time you use your inhaler. This will help to avoid a build up of bacteria which can lead to oral thrush. Brushing your teeth or using mouthwash can help get rid of an unpleasant taste. Making sure you use your inhaler correctly is the best way to avoid side effects like a sore throat, unpleasant taste or oral thrush.
Seretide and Symbicort are both combination inhalers which work to prevent asthma attacks and manage symptoms. They can also be used to treat COPD. These inhalers work by releasing corticosteroids to reduce inhalation. The bronchodilators relax the blood vessels and allow them to widen. Symbicort is often prescribed for teenagers aged 12-17 to control their asthma, whereas Seretide is more likely to be prescribed for adults.
Symbicort differs from other types of asthma inhalers as it is a combined inhaler, containing two different medicines. It may be prescribed for people with more severe asthma or if their symptoms worsen over time. The main two types of asthma inhalers are reliever or preventer inhalers. Reliever inhalers are prescribed to everyone diagnosed with asthma to relieve symptoms as they occur. If you need to use your reliever inhaler more than twice a week then you'll be prescribed a preventer inhaler to use every day to manage your asthma. Symbicort is a stronger type of preventer inhaler.
Symbicort cannot be used to treat an asthma attack. Only your Ventolin inhaler can be used to treat an asthma attack. Symbicort is a preventer inhaler which means it only works at preventing symptoms and asthma attacks.
Symbicort may leave an unpleasant taste in your mouth. This is usually caused by inhaling the medicine incorrectly so that it hits the back of the throat instead of going straight down into the lungs.
Symbicort does not normally cause problems for people who are lactose intolerant, however you should still mention this to the prescribing doctor. Symbicort contains only a small amount of lactose, which is not usually enough to initiate a reaction.