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beclomethasone inhalation

Pronunciation

Generic Name: beclomethasone inhalation (be kloe METH a sone)
Brand Name: Qvar, Beclovent, Vanceril, Vanceril DS, Qvar with Dose Counter

What is beclomethasone inhalation?

Beclomethasone is a steroid. It prevents the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation.

Beclomethasone inhalation is used to prevent asthma attacks in adults and children who are at least 5 years old. This medication will not treat an asthma attack that has already begun.

Beclomethasone inhalation may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about beclomethasone inhalation?

Beclomethasone inhalation will not work fast enough to treat an asthma attack. Use only a fast acting inhalation medicine for an asthma attack.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using beclomethasone inhalation?

You should not use beclomethasone if you are allergic to it.

To make sure this medicine is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • any type of bacterial, fungal, or viral infection;

  • active tuberculosis infection that is not being treated;

  • herpes infection of the eyes;

  • osteoporosis, or low bone mineral density;

  • a weak immune system; or

  • cataracts, glaucoma, or increased pressure inside your eyes.

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

Beclomethasone inhalation can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.

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

How should I use beclomethasone inhalation?

Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Beclomethasone is not a rescue medicine. It will not work fast enough to treat an asthma attack. Use only a fast-acting asthma medicine for an attack. Tell your doctor if it seems like your asthma medications don't work as well.

Follow all patient instructions for safe and effective use, and directions for priming the inhaler device. Prime the inhaler device before the first use by pumping 2 test sprays into the air, away from your face. Prime the inhaler if it has not been used for longer than 10 days.

To reduce the chance of developing a yeast infection, rinse your mouth with water after using beclomethasone. Do not swallow.

Do not wash your inhaler device or allow it to get wet. Wipe the mouthpiece with a clean dry tissue or cloth at least once per week.

Your inhaler device may have a dose counter to show how many sprays are left in the canister. Check this number often. When the number reaches 0, there are no sprays left. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.

Always use the new device provided with the medicine when you get your prescription filled.

It may take up to 4 weeks before your symptoms improve. Keep using the medication as directed and call your doctor if your symptoms do not begin to improve after 2 weeks of treatment.

Your dose needs may change if you have surgery, are ill, are under stress, or have recently had an asthma attack. Do not change your medication dose or schedule without your doctor's advice.

Asthma is usually treated with a combination of drugs. Use all medications as directed by your doctor. 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.

If you switched to beclomethasone from an oral (taken by mouth) steroid, do not stop using the other steroid suddenly or you may have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Talk with your doctor about tapering your steroid dose before stopping completely.

You may need to restart the oral steroid if you are under stress or have an asthma attack or other medical emergency. Wear a medical alert tag or carry an ID card stating that you may need an oral steroid in an emergency.

Beclomethasone can weaken your immune system. Your blood may need to be tested often.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Store the inhaler device with the canister upright and the mouthpiece on top. Keep the canister away from open flame or high heat, such as in a car on a hot day. The canister may explode if it gets too hot. Do not puncture or burn an empty inhaler canister.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the medicine 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.

What should I avoid while using beclomethasone inhalation?

Rinse with water if this medicine gets in your eyes.

Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Call your doctor for preventive treatment if you are exposed to chicken pox or measles. These conditions can be serious or even fatal in people who are using steroid medication.

Beclomethasone inhalation side effects

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

Beclomethasone can affect growth in children. Talk with your doctor if you think your child is not growing at a normal rate while using this medicine.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

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

  • worsening asthma symptoms;

  • white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips;

  • blurred vision, tunnel vision, eye pain, or seeing halos around lights;

  • signs of infection--fever, chills, body aches, vomiting; or

  • signs of low adrenal gland hormones--worsening tiredness, lack of energy, weakness, feeling light-headed, nausea, vomiting.

Common side effects may include:

  • headache;

  • sore throat; or

  • irritation in your nose or throat.

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.

Beclomethasone inhalation dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Asthma -- Maintenance:

For patients previously receiving bronchodilators alone:
-Initial dose: 40 to 80 mcg via oral inhalation twice a day
For patients previously receiving inhaled corticosteroids:
-Initial dose: 40 to 160 mcg via oral inhalation twice a day
Maintenance dose: May increase dose in 3 to 4 weeks if response is not adequate; after asthma stability has been achieved, titrate to the lowest effective dose to reduce the possibility of side effects
Maximum dose: 320 mcg twice a day

Comments:
-Improvement in asthma control can occur as early as 24 hours, but may take 1 to 2 weeks; maximum benefit is usually achieved within 3 to 4 weeks; individual patients may experience a variable onset and degree of symptom relief.
-If asthma symptoms arise, a fast acting inhaled bronchodilator should be used for immediate relief; this drug should not be used for the relief of acute bronchospasm.
-In the US, the dose delivered from the actuator is the labeled dose; in some countries, the dose delivered from the valve (ex-valve) is the labeled dose; actuator doses of 80 and 40 mcg are equivalent to ex-valve doses of 100 and 50 mcg, respectively.

Uses: Prophylactic management of asthma; for use when this therapy may reduce or eliminate the need for systemic corticosteroid administration in patients with asthma requiring systemic corticosteroid administration.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Asthma -- Maintenance:

Age: 5 to 11 years:
Initial dose: 40 mcg via oral inhalation twice a day
Maintenance dose: May increase dose in 3 to 4 weeks if response is not adequate; after asthma stability has been achieved, titrate to the lowest effective dose to reduce the possibility of side effects
Maximum dose: 80 mcg twice a day

Age: 12 years or older:
For patients previously receiving bronchodilators alone:
-Initial dose: 40 to 80 mcg via oral inhalation twice a day
For patients previously receiving inhaled corticosteroids:
-Initial dose: 40 to 160 mcg via oral inhalation twice a day
Maintenance dose: May increase dose in 3 to 4 weeks if response is not adequate; after asthma stability has been achieved, titrate to the lowest effective dose to reduce the possibility of side effects
Maximum dose: 320 mcg twice a day

Comments:
-Improvement in asthma control can occur as early as 24 hours, but may take 1 to 2 weeks; maximum benefit is usually achieved within 3 to 4 weeks; individual patients may experience a variable onset and degree of symptom relief.
-If asthma symptoms arise, a fast acting inhaled bronchodilator should be used for immediate relief; this drug should not be used for the relief of acute bronchospasm.
-In the US, the dose delivered from the actuator is the labeled dose; in some countries, the dose delivered from the valve (ex-valve) is the labeled dose; actuator doses of 80 and 40 mcg are equivalent to ex-valve doses of 100 and 50 mcg, respectively.

Uses: Prophylactic management of asthma; for use when this therapy may reduce or eliminate the need for systemic corticosteroid administration in patients with asthma requiring systemic corticosteroid administration.

What other drugs will affect beclomethasone inhalation?

Other drugs may interact with beclomethasone inhalation, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about beclomethasone.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication 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 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 10.02.

Date modified: September 05, 2017
Last reviewed: July 28, 2017

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