Medications for Asthma
Other names: Bronchial Asthma; Exercise-induced asthma; Wheezing
While asthma may not have a cure, there are effective long-term medications available to manage it and improve a person with asthma's quality of life.
- Quick-relief medications, such as albuterol (ProAir HFA, Ventolin HFA)These open the airways quickly to ease attacks and worsening symptoms
- Long-term control medications. There are several different types:
- Inhaled Corticosteroids, such as fluticasone (Flovent HFA) or budesonide (Pulmicort Flexhaler). These reduce swelling and tightness in the airways and are used regularly to prevent asthma attacks.
- Leukotriene modifiers, such as montelukast (Singulair). These block chemicals that cause asthma symptoms.
- Long-acting beta agonists (LABAs), such as salmeterol (Serevent Diskus). These open the airways for 12+ hours.
- Combination inhalers, usually contain a corticosteroid and a bronchodilator (such as fluticasone and salmeterol [Advair Diskus])
Other medications that may be used for asthma include:
- Ipratropium (Atrovent HFA) which is a short-acting bronchodilator that works in a different way to albuterol
- Theophylline (Theo-24), an oral bronchodilator that may be used for mild asthma
- Oral corticosteroids (prednisone), that may be used to help control severe asthma attacks
- Immunotherapy for allergic asthma
- Biologics, such as omalizumab (Xolair) for allergic asthma and benralizumab (Fasenra), dupilumab (Dupixent), mepolizumab (Nucala), reslizumab (Cinqair), or tezepelumab-ekko (Tezspire) which target cytokines for severe eosinophilic asthma.
Drugs used to treat Asthma
The following list of medications are in some way related to or used in the treatment of this condition.
Frequently asked questions
- How long does an asthma attack last?
- Can severe asthma lead to COPD?
- What is considered severe asthma?
- How is severe asthma treated?
- Which measure is the single best determinant of asthma severity?
- Why is asthma worse at night?
- How does Cinqair work in eosinophilic asthma?
- Prednisone: What are 12 Things You Should Know?
- Prednisone vs Prednisolone - What's the difference?
Topics under Asthma
Alternative treatments for Asthma
The following products are considered to be alternative treatments or natural remedies for Asthma. Their efficacy may not have been scientifically tested to the same degree as the drugs listed in the table above. However there may be historical, cultural or anecdotal evidence linking their use to the treatment of Asthma.
- Black Haw
- Evening primrose
Learn more about Asthma
- Asthma in Children
- COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
- Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction
- Exercise-Induced Bronchospasm in Children
- Moderate and Severe Persistent Asthma
Symptoms and treatments
Medicine.com guides (external)
|For ratings, users were asked how effective they found the medicine while considering positive/adverse effects and ease of use (1 = not effective, 10 = most effective).
|Activity is based on recent site visitor activity relative to other medications in the list.
|Prescription or Over-the-counter.
|This medication may not be approved by the FDA for the treatment of this condition.
|An Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) allows the FDA to authorize unapproved medical products or unapproved uses of approved medical products to be used in a declared public health emergency when there are no adequate, approved, and available alternatives.
|Expanded Access is a potential pathway for a patient with a serious or immediately life-threatening disease or condition to gain access to an investigational medical product (drug, biologic, or medical device) for treatment outside of clinical trials when no comparable or satisfactory alternative therapy options are available.
|Adequate and well-controlled studies have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus in the first trimester of pregnancy (and there is no evidence of risk in later trimesters).
|Animal reproduction studies have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women.
|Animal reproduction studies have shown an adverse effect on the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant use in pregnant women despite potential risks.
|There is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience or studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant use in pregnant women despite potential risks.
|Studies in animals or humans have demonstrated fetal abnormalities and/or there is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience, and the risks involved in use in pregnant women clearly outweigh potential benefits.
|FDA has not classified the drug.
|Controlled Substances Act (CSA) Schedule
|The drug has multiple schedules. The schedule may depend on the exact dosage form or strength of the medication.
|CSA Schedule is unknown.
|Is not subject to the Controlled Substances Act.
|Has a high potential for abuse. Has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. There is a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision.
|Has a high potential for abuse. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States or a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions. Abuse may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.
|Has a potential for abuse less than those in schedules 1 and 2. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to moderate or low physical dependence or high psychological dependence.
|Has a low potential for abuse relative to those in schedule 3. It has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to those in schedule 3.
|Has a low potential for abuse relative to those in schedule 4. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to those in schedule 4.
|Interacts with Alcohol.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.