Proper Use

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

Inhaled salmeterol is used to prevent asthma attacks and to treat chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). It is not used to relieve an asthma attack that has already started. For relief of an asthma attack that has already started, you should use another medicine. If you do not have another medicine to use for an attack or if you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.

This medicine comes with patient directions or a medication guide. Read the directions carefully before using this medicine. If you do not understand the directions or you are not sure how to use the Diskus®, ask your doctor or pharmacist to show you what to do.

Use this medicine only as directed by your doctor. Do not use more of it and do not use it more often than your doctor ordered. Also, do not stop using this medicine without telling your doctor. To do so may increase the chance of having breathing problems.

In order for this medicine to help prevent asthma or COPD attacks, it must be used every day in regularly spaced doses, as ordered by your doctor.

To use the Diskus®:

  • Open the foil pouch containing the Diskus®.
  • To open the Diskus®, push the thumb grip away from you as far as it will go. You will hear a click and feel a snap. When open, the mouthpiece will appear.
  • Slide the mouthpiece lever away from you as far as it will go until it clicks. The Diskus® is now ready to use. If you close the Diskus® or push the lever again, you will lose medicine.
  • Turn your head away from the Diskus®, and breathe out to the end of a normal breath. Do not breathe into the Diskus®.
  • Holding the Diskus® level, put the mouthpiece between your lips and teeth, and close your lips around the mouthpiece. Do not bite down on the mouthpiece. Do not block the mouthpiece with your teeth or tongue.
  • Breathe in through your mouth as deeply as you can until you have taken a full deep breath. Do not breathe through your nose.
  • Hold your breath and remove the mouthpiece from your mouth. Continue holding your breath as long as you can up to 10 seconds before breathing out slowly. This gives the medicine time to settle in your airways and lungs.
  • Turn your head away from the Diskus®, and breathe out slowly to the end of a normal breath. Do not breathe into the Diskus®.
  • If your doctor has told you to inhale more than one puff of medicine at each dose, take the second puff using exactly the same steps you used for the first puff.
  • When you are finished, close the Diskus®. Place your thumb on the thumb grip, and slide it back toward you as far as it will go. You will hear it click shut.
  • Keep the Diskus® dry. Do not wash the mouthpiece, or any other part of the Diskus®. You may use a dry cloth to wipe it clean.
  • The Diskus® has a window that shows the number of doses that are left. This tells you when you are getting low on medicine. When the Diskus® has 5 doses left, the numbers from 5 to 0 will show up in red to remind you to refill your prescription.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For inhalation dosage form (powder):
    • For preventing an asthma attack:
      • Adults, teenagers, and children 4 years of age and older—One inhalation (50 micrograms [mcg]) two times per day (morning and evening). The doses should be at least 12 hours apart.
      • Children younger than 4 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For maintenance treatment of COPD:
      • Adults—One inhalation (50 micrograms [mcg]) two times per day (morning and evening). The doses should be at least 12 hours apart.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For preventing exercise-induced bronchospasm (EIB):
      • Adults, teenagers, and children 4 years of age and older—One inhalation (50 micrograms [mcg]) taken 30 minutes before exercise.
      • Children younger than 4 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Keep the medicine in the foil pouch until you are ready to use it. Store at room temperature, away from heat and direct light. Do not freeze.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Throw the medicine away 6 weeks after it is removed from the foil pouch or after all the blisters have been used.