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PULMICORT
BUDESONIDE - ORAL BREATH ACTIVATED INHALER

Important Note

The following information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before using this drug.

BUDESONIDE - ORAL BREATH ACTIVATED INHALER

(byou-DESS-oh-nide)

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Pulmicort

Uses

This is an anti-inflammatory medication (corticosteroid) used in the prevention of asthma. It is not used to relieve an asthma attack. If an asthma attack occurs, use other medication as prescribed.

How To Use

This medication is inhaled into the lungs using a special inhaling device. Follow the directions for using this medicine provided by your doctor. This medicine comes with a patient information leaflet. Read it carefully. If you are not sure how to use this device, reread the patient information leaflet or ask your pharmacist. After the dose is loaded, breathe out. Place the mouthpiece between your lips and breathe in rapidly and deeply through your mouth. The drug will be inhaled as you breathe in. Hold your breath for 10 seconds to assure it reaches deep into your lungs. Slowly breathe out. Do not exhale into device. Replace the cover. If the inhaler device is dropped, shaken, or you accidentally breathe into the device after the dose has been loaded, you will lose your dose. Load and inhale another dose. Do not use the inhaler if it has been damaged or if the mouthpiece has become detached. If two inhalations are prescribed, wait at least one minute between inhalations. If using other inhalers, use this one (the corticosteroid) last and wait several minutes after using the other(s) before using this one. To prevent dry mouth and hoarseness, rinse your mouth after each use. Do not swallow the rinse solution. It is important to practice good oral hygiene to prevent mouth infections while using this medication. This medication works best if used consistently at even intervals. It is usually used once in the morning and evening. Do not increase your dose, use this more frequently or stop using this medication without first consulting your doctor.

Side Effects

Dry or irritated throat, hoarseness or coughing may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. A bad taste in the mouth, headache, nausea, diarrhea, thirst and tiredness have also been reported. If any of these effects continue or become bothersome, inform your doctor. Notify your doctor if you develop: rash, sore throat, mouth sores, swelling of the face, wheezing, breathing trouble, behavioral changes (especially in children), vision changes. Contact your doctor if you experience any of the following signs of low steroid levels: unusual weakness, weight loss, nausea, vomiting, fainting, dizziness. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Precautions

Before you use this drug, tell your doctor your medical history including: all illnesses or infections, recent exposures to contagious diseases (e.g., chickenpox), glaucoma, cataracts, any allergies (especially drug allergies). If within the past 12 months you have switched from an oral corticosteroid (e.g., prednisone) to this inhaler, or if you had been using this product in higher-than-usual doses and suddenly stopped using it, your body may not produce enough natural steroids. You may need to start taking additional corticosteroids, especially if your body is stressed due to major infection, surgery or injury. Consult your doctor. If you cough up mucus that has thickened or changed color from clear white to yellow, green, or gray, contact your doctor; these changes may be signs of an infection. Children and teenagers should be monitored for proper growth patterns while using any corticosteroid medicine. This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. Based on information for similar drugs, budesonide may pass into breast milk. Therefore, consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Drug Interactions

Tell your doctor of any over-the-counter or prescription medication you may take especially: oral corticosteroids, immunosuppressants, other asthma medication. Do not start or stop any medicine without doctor or pharmacist approval.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately.

Notes

Each inhaler contains about 200 doses. When a red mark appears in the window under the mouthpiece, there are only 20 doses left. The inhaler is empty when the red mark reaches the lower edge of the window. Once empty, discard the inhaler as it cannot be refilled. Do not share this medication with others. Inform all your doctors you use (or have used) this medication.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, use it as soon as remembered; do not use it if it is near the time for the next dose, instead, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not "double-up" the dose to catch up.

Storage

Always replace the cover. Store inhaler at room temperature between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) in a dry place away from moisture.

Medical Alert

Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA), or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).