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Provocholine Dosage

Generic name: METHACHOLINE CHLORIDE 100mg in 100mg
Dosage form: powder, for inhalation solution

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Nov 18, 2019.

Given that Provocholine is a potent bronchoconstrictor:

  • Provocholine is contraindicated in pediatric and adult patients with or baseline FEV1 <60% predicted or in adults with FEV1 < 1.5 L [see Contraindications (4) and Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]
  • Use of Provocholine is not recommended in patients with clinically apparent asthma or wheezing
  • Discard any unused solution from the nebulizer after each administration.

Provocholine (the methacholine challenge test) should be administered in a pulmonary function laboratory or clinic, by adequately trained personnel, for safety and accuracy, and should be performed only under the responsibility of a healthcare practitioner trained in and thoroughly familiar with all aspects of the technique of methacholine challenge test and the management of respiratory distress. Emergency medication and equipment should be immediately available to treat acute respiratory distress.

Only consider Provocholine use in patients on chronic asthma drugs if the accuracy of the asthma diagnosis is in doubt. In these patients, only administer Provocholine if spirometry is normal after withdrawal of the asthma drugs under supervision.

Before using Provocholine, perform baseline pulmonary function tests with the 0.9% saline diluent or 0.9% saline with the 0.4% phenol diluent (use the same diluent to reconstitute the Provocholine powder) [see Dosage and Administration (2.3, 2.4].

May use Provocholine with or without meals.

Administer Provocholine by oral inhalation using either the 5-Breath Dosimeter Dosing Method or the 2-Minute Tidal Breathing Dosing Method with the doubling or quadrupling stepwise protocols [see Dosage and Administration (2.3, 2.4)].

Administer the diluent prior to administering the Provocholine dose(s) to obtain baseline FEV1 values. Administer the diluent via oral inhalation and the Provocholine oral inhalation dose(s) using a five-breath dosimeter.

Administration of the Diluent to Obtain Baseline FEV1 Values

1. Using a 3 mL syringe and needle, draw up 2 mL of the diluent (0.9% saline or 0.9% saline with 0.4% phenol) and dispense into the nebulizer using a sterile bacterial-retentive filter (porosity 0.22 µm).

2. Instruct the patient to hold the nebulizer upright with the mouthpiece in his/her mouth. The patient should wear a noseclip while inhaling from the nebulizer.

3. At end exhalation during tidal breathing (functional residual capacity), instruct the patient to inhale slowly and deeply through the mouthpiece. Trigger the dosimeter soon after oral inhalation begins.Encourage the patient to continue inhaling slowly (about 5 seconds to complete the inhalation) and to hold the breath at total lung capacity (TLC) for another 5 seconds.

4. Repeat Step 3 for a total of five inspiratory capacity inhalations. Take no more than 2 minutes to perform these 5 inhalations.

5. Perform spirometry and measure the FEV1 30 and 90 seconds after the fifth inhalation from the nebulizer. These values may be left at ambient (spirometer) temperature pressure saturated (ATPS). If the FEV1 value is not of acceptable quality repeat the procedure (patient must have a baseline FEV1 of ≥ 60% of the predicted value).

Administration of Provocholine (Methacholine Challenge Testing)

6. Using a 3 mL syringe and needle, draw up the recommended Provocholine oral inhalation dose (see Table 1) using the quadrupling dose and dispense into the nebulizer using a sterile bacterial-retentive filter (porosity 0.22 µm). See Table 4 for preparation of the Provocholine solutions for the quadrupling method.

Table 1: Recommended Provocholine Oral Inhalation Dose(s) [Quadrupling Dose(s)]

Provocholine Concentration
0.0625 mg/mL (Solution 5)
0.25 mg/mL (Solution 4)
1 mg/mL (Solution 3)
4 mg/mL (Solution 2)
16 mg/mL (Solution 1)

7. Repeat steps 2 through 5 for each Provocholine dose, emptying the nebulizer between each dose. To keep the cumulative effect of Provocholine relatively constant, the time interval between the commencement of two subsequent concentrations should be kept to 5 minutes Stop dosing if the FEV1 has fallen by ≥ 20% from the mean baseline, the FEV1 is ≤ 1.5 liters in adults, or the highest Provocholine dose (16 mg/mL) has been administered (whichever comes first). For severe bronchoconstriction, see Warnings and Precautions (5.1). Do not administer additional Provocholine doses.

8. After the test is completed, administer an inhaled β-agonist to the patient to expedite the return of the FEV1 to within 90% of baseline and to relieve any discomfort (the majority of patients revert to normal pulmonary function within 5 minutes after β-agonist administration; in contrast the majority of patients revert to normal pulmonary function within 30-45 minutes without a β-agonist administration). Wait 10 minutes and measure the FEV1 and Vital Capacity. Patients should not be allowed to leave the laboratory until their FEV1 has returned to within 90% of baseline.

9. After the test, wash and clean reusable nebulizers thoroughly according to manufacturers recommendations.

Administer the diluent prior to administering the Provocholine dose(s) to obtain baseline FEV1 values. Administer the diluent via oral inhalation and the Provocholine oral inhalation dose(s) using the English Wright nebulizer or other suitable nebulizers as long as the device output and particle size are characterized.

Administration of the Diluent to Obtain Baseline FEV1 Values

1. Using a 3 mL syringe and needle, draw up 2 to 3 mL of the diluent (0.9% saline or 0.9% saline with 0.4% phenol) and dispense into the nebulizer using a sterile bacterial-retentive filter (porosity 0.22 µm).

2. Keeping the nebulizer well away from the patient, adjust the flow meter so that the nebulizer is operating at the calibrated output (0.13 mL/minute time for the English Wright nebulizer).

3. Apply a nose clip and place the face mask loosely over the nose and mouth (or the mouthpiece in the mouth).

4. Start the nebulizer (holding in upright) and start the stopwatch immediately. Instruct the patient to hold the nebulizer to avoid warming the solution.

5. Instruct the patient to relax and breathe the aerosol quietly (tidal breathing) for 2 minutes of inhalation time.

6. After exactly 2 minutes, remove the face mask (or the mouthpiece from the mouth), turn off the flow meter, and discard any remaining solution.

7. Perform spirometry and measure the FEV1 30 and 90 seconds after the end of the inhalation. These values may be left at ambient (spirometer) temperature pressure saturated (ATPS). If the FEV1 value is not of acceptable quality repeat the procedure (patient must have a baseline FEV1 of ≥ 60% of the predicted value).

Administration of Provocholine (Methacholine Challenge Test)

8. Using a 3 mL syringe and needle, draw up the recommended Provocholine oral inhalation dose (see Table 2) using either the doubling or quadrupling method and dispense into the nebulizer using a sterile bacterial-retentive filter (porosity 0.22 µm). See Tables 3 and 4 for preparation of the Provocholine solutions for the doubling and quadrupling methods, respectively.

Table 2: Recommended Provocholine Oral Inhalation Dose(s) By Nebulization [Doubling Dose(s) or Quadrupling Dose(s)]

Doubling Dose Increments
Provocholine Concentration Provocholine Dose*
0.0625 mg/mL (Solution I) 1.484 mcg
0.125 mg/mL (Solution H) 2.969 mcg
0.25 mg/mL (Solution G) 5.938 mcg
0.5 mg/mL (Solution F) 11.875 mcg
1 mg/mL (Solution E) 23.75 mcg
2 mg/mL (Solution D) 47.5 mcg
4 mg/mL (Solution C) 95 mcg
8 mg/mL (Solution B) 190 mcg
16 mg/mL (Solution A) 380 mcg
Quadrupling Dose Increments
Provocholine Concentration Provocholine Dose*
0.0625 mg/mL (Solution 5) 1.484 mcg
0.25 mg/mL (Solution 4) 5.938 mcg
1 mg/mL (Solution 3) 23.75 mcg
4 mg/mL (Solution 2) 95 mcg
16 mg/mL (Solution 1) 380 mcg

* Dose delivered based on the drug output of the English Wright Nebulizer and the duration of inhalation (2 minutes).

9. Repeat steps 2 through 7 for each Provocholine dose, emptying the nebulizer between each dose. However, stop dosing if the FEV1 has fallen by 20% from the mean baseline, the FEV1 is ≤1.5 liters in adults, or the highest Provocholine dose (380 mcg) has been administered (whichever comes first). For severe bronchoconstriction, see Warnings and Precautions (5.1). Do not administer additional Provocholine doses.

10. After the test is completed, administer an inhaled β-agonist to the patient to expedite the return of the FEV1 to within 90% of baseline and to relieve any discomfort (the majority of patients revert to normal pulmonary function within 5 minutes after β-agonist administration; in contrast the majority of patients revert to normal pulmonary function within 30-45 minutes without a β-agonist administration). Wait 10 minutes and measure the FEV1 and Vital Capacity. Patients should not be allowed to leave the laboratory until their FEV1 has returned to within 90% of baseline.

11. After the test, wash and clean reusable nebulizers thoroughly according to manufacturers recommendations and discard disposable nebulizers appropriately.

Provocholine requires reconsitution before use (see Tables 3 and 4):

  • Add 6.25 mL of 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection (0.9% saline) OR 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection with 0.4% phenol (0.9% saline with 0.4% phenol) to the supplied vials containing 100 mg of Provocholine powder
  • Shake the vial to obtain a clear solution.

Dilute the reconstituted Provocholine solution:

  • Using sterile, empty USP Type 1 borosilicate glass vials, dilute the reconstituted Provocholine solution with 0.9% saline or 0.9% saline with 0.4% phenol either by doubling the concentration (see Table 3) or quadrupling the concentration (see Table 4).
  • After adding the diluent shake each vial to obtain a clear solution.
  • Use the same diluent to prepare all concentrations.

Use a sterile bacterial-retentive filter (porosity 0.22 µm) when transferring the reconstituted or diluted solution from each vial (at least 2 mL) to a nebulizer.

Refrigerate the reconstituted and diluted solutions at 36o to 46oF (2o to 8oC) for up to 2 weeks. Since the temperature of the solution affects nebulizer output, solutions should be taken out of the refrigerator and allowed to equilibrate to room temperature (approximately 30 minutes) before use.

Table 3: Reconsitution and Dilution of Supplied Provocholine Powder: Doubling Concentrations

TAKE ADD 0.9% Saline or 0.9% Saline with 0.4% Phenol

Concentration

(Total volume) after reconstitution or dilution

100 mg of Provocholine Powder in one supplied vial 6.25 mL 16 mg/mL (6.25 mL) (Solution A)
3 mL of Solution A 3 mL 8 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution B)
3 mL of Solution B 3 mL 4 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution C)
3 mL of Solution C 3 mL 2 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution D)
3 mL of Solution D 3 mL 1 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution E)
3 mL of Solution E 3 mL 0.5 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution F)
3 mL of Solution F 3 mL 0.25 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution G)
3 mL of Solution G 3 mL 0.125 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution H)
3 mL of Solution H 3 mL 0.0625 mg/mL (6 mL) (Solution I)

Table 4: Reconstitiution and Dilution of Supplied Provocholine Powder: Quadrupling Concentrations

TAKE ADD 0.9% Saline or 0.9% Saline with 0.4% Phenol Concentration (Total Volume) after reconstitution or dilution
100 mg of Provocholine Powder in one supplied vial 6.25 mL 16 mg/mL (6.25 mL) (Solution 1)
3 mL of Solution 1 9 mL 4 mg/mL (12 mL) (Solution 2)
3 mL of Solution 2 9 mL 1 mg/mL (12 mL) (Solution 3)
3 mL of Solution 3 9 mL 0.25 mg/mL (12 mL) (Solution 4)
3 mL of Solution 4 9 mL 0.0625 mg/mL (12 mL) (Solution 5)

A positive methacholine challenge test is a 20% reduction in the FEV1 (after Provocholine oral inhalation) compared with the mean baseline value (after oral inhalation of the diluent). Calculate and record this value before the methacholine challenge test is started. Express airway hyperreactivity as the provocative Provocholine concentration (mg/mL) providing a fall in FEV1 of 20% (PC20) when the methacholine challenge test is dosed using either the 5-breath dosimeter method or the 2-minute tidal breathing method, or as the provocative Provocholine dose (mcg) providing a fall in FEV1 of 20% (PD20) when using the 2-minute tidal breathing method

Calculation of PC20
Calculate PC20 using one of the following methods. Determine the percent decrease in FEV1 using the mean baseline FEV1 and the lowest FEV1 post-dose, as shown below:

% fall in FEV1 = mean baseline FEV1 lowest FEV1 post-Provocholine x 100
mean baseline FEV1

Method #1

Plot the percent decrease in FEV1 against the increasing methacholine concentration using a log scale and obtain the PC20 by linear interpolation between the last two points, as shown in Figure 1.

figure1

Method #2

Alternatively, calculate the PC20 as follows:

pc20-1

Where:

  • C1 = second last methacholine concentration (<20% FEV1 decrease)
  • C2 = last methacholine concentration (>20% FEV1 decrease)
  • R1 = % fall FEV1 after C1
  • R2 = % fall FEV1 after C2

Calculation of PD20 (2-minute tidal breathing method only)

Calculate the PD20 as follows:

pc20-2

Where:

  • D1 = second last Provocholine dose (<20% FEV1 decrease)
  • D2 = last Provocholine dose (>20% FEV1 decrease)
  • R1 = % FEV1 decrease after D1
  • R2 = % FEV1 decrease after D2

When using the English Wright nebulizer, refer to Table 2 for D1 and D2.

Interpretation of Results
A negative (normal) methacholine challenge result is defined as FEV1 reduction of less than 20% after all the doses (doubling or quadrupling dose increments) in Table 1 (for 5-breath dosimeter method) or Table 2 (for the 2-minute tidal breathing method) have been administered.

If asthma drugs are discontinued prior to the methacholine challenge test consider the possibility of rebound airway hyperreactivity in the interpretation of the test results. The methacholine challenge test may occasionally be false positive after an influenza infection or upper respiratory infection, immunizations, in very young or very old patients, in patients with chronic lung disease (e.g., cystic fibrosis, sarcoidosis, tuberculosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), in patients with allergic rhinitis without asthma symptoms, in smokers, or in patients after exposure to air pollutants.

Further information

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