Skip to Content


Generic Name: formoterol (inhalation) (for MOE ter all)
Brand Names: Foradil Aerolizer, Perforomist

What is Foradil?

Foradil (formoterol) is a long-acting bronchodilator. It relaxes muscles in the airways to improve breathing.

Foradil is used to prevent asthma attacks or exercise-induced bronchospasm in adults and children who are at least 5 years old.

Foradil is also used to prevent bronchospasm in adults with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Important information

Do not use Foradil to treat a sudden asthma or bronchospasm attack. It will not work fast enough. Use only a fast-acting inhalation medicine.

Formoterol may increase the risk of asthma-related death or hospitalization. Use only the prescribed dose of this medicine, and follow all patient instructions for safe use.

If you use Foradil for asthma, you must use it together with another long-term asthma control medication. Seek medical attention if you think any of your asthma medications are not working as well as usual.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use Foradil if you are allergic to formoterol. Do not use formoterol to treat asthma without using another long-term asthma control medicine (such as an inhaled steroid).

Formoterol may increase the risk of death or hospitalization in people with asthma, but the risk in people with COPD is not known. Talk with your doctor about your individual risk.

To make sure Foradil is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • a food or drug allergy;

  • heart disease or high blood pressure;

  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;

  • diabetes;

  • a thyroid disorder;

  • pheochromocytoma (tumor of the adrenal gland); or

  • a history of aneurysm (swelling of an artery).

Foradil capsules may contain lactose and milk protein. Talk to your doctor before using Foradil if you have allergies or severe problems with lactose (milk sugar).

It is not known whether Foradil will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medicine.

It is not known whether formoterol inhalation passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Foradil should not be given to a child younger than 5 years old.

How should I use Foradil Aerolizer?

Use Foradil exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Use only the prescribed dose of this medicine, and do not use it for longer than your doctor recommends.

If you use Foradil for asthma, you must use it together with another long-term asthma control medication. Use all medications as directed by your doctor. Do not change your doses or medication schedule without your doctor's advice.

For asthma or COPD, Foradil is usually given 2 times a day, about 12 hours apart. To prevent exercise-induced asthma, use the medicine 15 minutes before exercising and allow 12 hours to pass before using the medicine again. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully.

Foradil is not a rescue medicine. It will not work fast enough to treat an asthma or bronchospasm attack. Use only a fast acting inhalation medicine for an attack. Tell your doctor if any of your medicines seem to stop working as well in controlling your asthma or COPD.

Read all patient information, medication guides, and instruction sheets provided to you. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Any child using Foradil should be supervised by an adult while using this medicine.

Foradil capsules are for use only in the Foradil Aerolizer device provided. Do not take the capsule by mouth. Use only one capsule at a time. Use dry hands when handling the capsule. Never place a capsule in the mouthpiece of the inhaler.

The Foradil Aerolizer inhalation device is not to be used with a spacer.

Use this medicine regularly to get the most benefit. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.

Seek medical attention if you think your asthma medications are not working as well. An increased need for medication could be an early sign of a serious asthma attack.

Store this medicine at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep all capsules in their original packaging until you are ready to use a dose.

Do not try to clean or take apart the Aerolizer device. Throw it away when your capsules run out. Always use the new device provided with the medication when you get your prescription refilled.

See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include chest pain, fast or irregular heartbeats, nervousness, tremors, feeling weak or light-headed, fainting, or seizure (convulsions).

What should I avoid while using Foradil?

Do not use a second form of formoterol (Bevespi, Dulera, Symbicort) or other long-acting inhaled bronchodilator (arformoterol, salmeterol, Advair, Brovana, Serevent) without your doctor's advice.

Foradil side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Foradil: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have;

  • wheezing, choking, or other breathing problems after using this medicine;

  • pounding heartbeats or fluttering in your chest;

  • nervousness, trouble sleeping;

  • worsening asthma symptoms;

  • high blood sugar - increased thirst or urination, hunger, dry mouth, fruity breath odor, drowsiness, dry skin, blurred vision, weight loss; or

  • low potassium - leg cramps, constipation, numbness or tingling, muscle weakness or limp feeling.

Common Foradil side effects may include:

  • dizziness, anxiety, tremors;

  • chest pain;

  • headache, sleep problems (insomnia);

  • stomach pain, indigestion, nausea;

  • sore throat, cough, runny nose, sinus pain;

  • muscle cramps; or

  • viral infections.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

What other drugs will affect Foradil?

Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using, especially:

  • theophylline;

  • a diuretic or "water pill";

  • a beta-blocker - atenolol, carvedilol, metoprolol, propranolol, sotalol, and others; or

  • an MAO inhibitor - isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, tranylcypromine, and others.

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with formoterol inhalation, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about Foradil.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Foradil only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2018 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 6.01.

Date modified: February 03, 2017
Last reviewed: January 06, 2017