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How To Use A Metered-dose Inhaler With A Spacer

What is a metered-dose inhaler with a spacer?

A metered-dose inhaler is a handheld device that delivers a dose of medicine as a mist. You breathe the medicine deep into your lungs to open your airways. A spacer is a tube that attaches to the mouthpiece of your metered-dose inhaler. The spacer holds the medicine until you breathe in.

How do I use my inhaler with a spacer?

  • Remove the caps from your inhaler and spacer. Check to make sure there are no foreign objects in the inhaler mouthpiece or spacer.
  • Insert the inhaler mouthpiece into the spacer.
  • Shake the inhaler to mix the medicine.
  • Breathe out fully. Place the spacer mouthpiece between your lips.
  • Press down on the canister. Then, breathe in slowly.
  • Hold your breath for about 10 seconds. Breathe out slowly.
  • Repeat if more puffs of medicine are needed.

How do I care for my inhaler and spacer?

Put the caps back on the inhaler and the spacer after each use to keep the mouthpieces clean. Clean the spacer as directed at least once a week.

When should I contact my caregiver?

  • You usually take more puffs from the inhaler than your caregiver says you need.
  • You run out of medicine before your next refill is due, or sooner than your caregiver says you should.
  • You feel like your medicine is not controlling your symptoms.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

When should I seek immediate care or call 911?

  • Your lips or nails turn blue or gray.
  • The skin between your ribs or around your neck pulls in with every breath.
  • You feel short of breath, even after you use your inhaler.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

© 2015 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

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