Skip to main content

Pulmozyme

Generic name: dornase alfa (inhalation) [ DOOR-nase-AL-fa ]
Drug class: Miscellaneous respiratory agents

Medically reviewed by Philip Thornton, DipPharm. Last updated on Aug 9, 2021.

What is Pulmozyme?

Pulmozyme is a synthetic protein that breaks down excess DNA in the pulmonary secretions of people with cystic fibrosis.

Pulmozyme is used in people with cystic fibrosis to thin mucus in the airways. This may help improve lung function and lower the risk of infections.

Pulmozyme is an inhalation solution and is administerd using a nebulizer, a device that turns liquid medicine into a mist.

Warnings

Do not dilute or mix the Pulmozyme inhalation solution with any other drugs in the nebulizer. Mixing the solution with other drugs could lead to changes in the actions of the medications.

Ampules of Pulmozyme do not contain a preservative. Once opened, the entire contents of the ampule must be used or discarded.

Pulmozyme must be stored in the refrigerator between 36 and 46 degrees Fahrenheit (2 and 8 degrees Celsius) and protected from strong light. Keep unused ampules in the protective foil pouch. Pulmozyme should be kept refrigerated during transport. Combined lengths of exposure of the medication to room temperature should not exceed 24 hours.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use Pulmozyme if you are allergic to dornase alfa or other Chinese Hamster Ovary cell products.

Do not give this medicine to a child without medical advice.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

How should I use Pulmozyme?

Take Pulmozyme exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets.

Use Pulmozyme regularly to get the most benefit.

Read and follow all Instructions for Use. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you need help.

To use the solution with most nebulizers:

  • Pour the medicine into the nebulizer chamber. Attach the mouthpiece or face mask, then attach the chamber to the compressor. Sit upright and place the mouthpiece into your mouth or put on the face mask. Turn on the compressor.

  • Breathe slowly and evenly until there is no more mist and the drug chamber is empty.

  • Clean the nebulizer after each use. On certain nebulizer systems, you may need to change the handset after 90 uses. Follow the directions that came with your nebulizer.

Do not dilute or mix Pulmozyme with any other drugs in the nebulizer.

Tell the doctor if your child has trouble breathing in or out while using the nebulizer.

Each ampule is for one use only. Throw it away after one use, even if there is still medicine left inside.

Store Pulmozyme ampules in the refrigerator, protected from light. Keep unused ampules in the protective foil pouch.

Pulmozyme must be stored in the refrigerator between 36°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C) until you are ready to use it. Do not freeze. When traveling, Pulmozyme should be kept cold in its foil pouch. Protect from excessive heat and strong light. Keep unused ampules in the protective foil pouch.

Do not use Pulmozyme if it has been left at room temperature for a total time exceeding 24 hours. Do not use past the expiration date printed on the ampule.

Call your pharmacist if the medicine looks cloudy or has changed colors.

Dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Cystic Fibrosis:

2.5 mg (1 single-use ampule) inhaled orally once daily using a recommended nebulizer/compressor system

Comment:
-Some patients may benefit from twice daily administration.

Use:
-Coadministration with standard therapies for the management of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients to improve pulmonary function
-To reduce the risk of respiratory tract infections requiring parenteral antibiotics in CF patients with a Force Vital Capacity (FVC) of 40% or more

Usual Pediatric Dose for Cystic Fibrosis:

5 years or older:
2.5 mg (1 single-use ampule) inhaled orally once daily using a recommended nebulizer/compressor system

Comment:
-Some patients may benefit from twice daily administration.

Uses:
-Coadministration with standard therapies for the management of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients to improve pulmonary function
-To reduce the risk of respiratory tract infections requiring parenteral antibiotics in CF patients with a Force Vital Capacity (FVC) of 40% or more

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not use two doses at one time.

What happens if I overdose?

Overdose is unlikely when used as directed, and is not expected to cause harmful effects.

What should I avoid while using Pulmozyme?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

Pulmozyme side effects

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

Call your doctor at once if you have worsened breathing problems, or if you experience any of the following serious side effects:

  • an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);

  • chest pain; or

  • fever.

Common Pulmozyme side effects may include:

  • sore throat;

  • chest pain, trouble breathing;

  • changes in the sound of your voice;

  • nasal stuffiness or discharge;

  • rash;

  • eye redness, irritation, or inflammation; or

  • fever.

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.

What other drugs will affect Pulmozyme?

Other drugs may interact with dornase alfa, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Pulmozyme only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.