Some cases of asthma may be treated with efficient asthmatic remedies for oral administration, such as montelucast or theophylline, but no one asthmatic can treat the disease without asthma inhalers. An inhaler is a special device that affords to deliver a drug directly into the lungs what promotes fast acting of the drug. There are three types of Inhalers for Asthma that contain different types of medications:
• Metered dose inhalers
• Dry powder inhalers
• Nebulizing machines.
Metered dose inhalers for asthma contain liquid medication that releases with the help of propellant (a special gas contained in the metal canister) in the form of aerosol. Every metered dose inhaler releases a certain dose of the drug and a patient doesn’t have to care about it. MDI can deliver reliving and preventive medicines, or a symptom controller. Aerosol inhalers should be used properly to get the best effect of the remedy. Otherwise the inhaled dose of the drug may be too small to relieve acute asthma attack. MDI can be used with a spacer that makes it easier to use the device properly and use the remedy efficiently.
Inhalers for asthma are also widely represented by dry-powder devices. These inhalers contain powder instead of aerosol, as compared with propellant containing inhalers. Patients who use this type of asthma inhalers note that these inhalers do not use propellant to release the drug. But, instead, for correct use of a dry powder inhaler a patient is required to make a fast and strong inhalation. Unfortunately, this type of inhalers for asthma cannot be used with a spacer, but some of the patients find it more comfortable to control the dose they inhale.
Nebulizing machines are used stationary within the scope of preventive therapy. Portable devices are also available, though they are not very comfortable for using at the event of asthma attack. Besides, as compared with inhalers for asthma, nebulizing machines are at disadvantage due to their dimensions. Nebulizers are designed to transform a liquid drug into fine-dispersed aerosol and pulverize it. Nowadays manufacturers offer customers two types of nebulizers: ultrasonic and compressor. They have different peculiarities of producing a mist that put some restrictions on using them. For example, ultrasonic nebulizers disperse the remedy with the help of ultrasonic vibrations. But antibiotics and sputum-diluting remedies disintegrate in these conditions and cannot be inhaled through a nebulizer.
It is extremely important to differentiate two types of asthma remedies used in treatment: anti-inflammatory drugs and bronchodilators. The latter are also known as fast-acting medications or relievers. They influence the tensed smooth muscles around the airways, relax them and thereby make airways wider. Usually it doesn’t take more than several minutes after inhalation to relieve the asthma attack. One should always keep a pack of relieving remedy ready to use in case of a sudden asthmatic fit. Bronchodilators are also active in preventing an exercise-induced asthma attack. But these medications are of no use as a preventive remedy. Anti-inflammatory drugs, or long-acting asthma medications, control the degree of inflammation and irritability in the lungs that can provoke a bronchospasm.
Depending on the stage of disease a doctor may prescribe different doses of drugs, including those delivered by inhalers. Do not adjust recommended doses to avoid unwanted sequelae.