A COPD Medication  Reference Guide for Canadians  

 

KNOW YOUR COPD MEDICATIONS

A  REFERENCE GUIDE FOR CANADIANS –    NOTE:  This List is  NOT  All  Inclusive & Is Intended as General Information ONLY!

Generic Name

Brand Name

(Name given to generic drug by manufacturer)

Drug Effect

(What do these medications do?)

Form of Medication

(How are these medications applied?)

Administration

(How and when should these drugs be taken?)

Possible Side Effects

(Symptoms that could develop from taking these drugs)

Short-acting Bronchodilators - These drugs are for use to relieve or prevent shortness of breath - “Rescue inhalers”

Salbutamol

(Albuterol in USA)

 

 

 

Ventolin

 

Prevents and relieves bronchial spasms and opens the airways by relaxing the smooth muscle that surrounds the airway.

Metered dose inhaler

Nebulizer solution

Subcutaneous   injections

 

Rinse mouth after using inhaler to prevent hoarseness and throat irritation.

 

Symptoms are temporary: dizziness, headache, muscle cramps, nausea, nervousness, palpitations, rapid heart beat, raised blood pressure and tremors

Terbutaline sulfate

Bricanyl

Dry powder inhaler

Long-acting bronchodilators -  These drugs are used on a fixed daily schedule to control symptoms of shortness of breath

also known as long-acting beta2-adrenergic agonists  or long acting beta agonists or LABAs

Salmeterol xinafoate

 

 

 

 

Formoterol fumarate

 

 

Serevent

 

 

 

 

Foradil, Oxeze

 

Prevents bronchial spasm. Opens the airway by relaxing the smooth muscle that lines the bronchi

Metered dose inhaler or Dry Powder Inhaler

Generally one or two puffs every 12 hours. Not for use to relieve an asthma attack.

(Note fortmoterol fumarate is fast-acting and may be used as a “rescue inhaler” but not if used less than 12 hours from any other dose of the same drug)

Same as with  short-acting bronchodilators

Long Acting beta-agonist (24 hour) – Taken once daily as a bronchodilator

Indacterol

Onbreze

Works on the lung as a bronchodilator. for  treatment of airflow obstruction

75 mcg capsule for use in the Breezhaler

Taken once daily

Cough, sore throat, headache,

Nausea, muscle spasms, upper Respiratory tract infections

Anti-cholinergic bronchodilators -  Also known as anti-muscarinics

Iptrotropium bromide

Atrovent HFA

Relieve bronchial spasms and reduce air trapped in lung

Metered dose inhaler,

nebulizer solution

Generally 2 puffs 4x day

Cough, dry mouth, bad taste. Avoid eye contact

Tiotropium bromide

Spiriva

Dry Powder Inhaler

2 puffs from the same capsule once per day

Dry mouth, may aggravate glaucoma and BPH (urinary retention) Avoid eye contact.

Inhaled Corticosteroids -   These drugs are used on a fixed daily schedule to control symptoms of inflammation and phlegm

Beclomethasone

dipropionate

 

Flunisolide

 

Beclovent,Beconase,

Flonase

Reduces inflammation and phlegm production in the airways

 

 

Hoarseness

Thrush – a yeast infection of mouth and throat.

Increased risk of pneumonia and osteoporosis

Fluticasone

propionate

Flovent

 

Budesonide

Pulmicort

'Turbuhaler' dry powder inhaler

Triamcinolone

Nasacort

 

Ciclesonide

Alvesco

 

Combination Inhalers – Combinations of Long acting bronchodilators and inhaled corticosteroids

Fluticasone/Salmeterol

Advair

Opens airways and reduce inflammation

Metered dose inhaler and/or dry powder inhaler

Generally one or two puffs every 12 hours

Not for use to relieve an asthma attack.

Use only as prescribed

Refer to side effects for each individual medication

Budesonide/Formaterol

Symbicort

Oral Corticosteroids -    To control inflammation during exacerbations

Prednisone

Prednisolone

Methylprednisolone

 

 

 

Reduce inflammation

Oral tablet or injection

Prescribed amount varies depending on condition.

Usually tapering off in a short period (two weeks or less).

Requires medical supervision.

Increased energy, Increased appetite, Sleeplessness, Mood swings

Can induce temporary diabetes and exacerbate established diabetes

Osteoporosis, glaucoma

Methylxanthines

Theophylline  aminophylline

Theo-dur

 

Slightly relaxes the airways in the lungs, improve breathing by increasing the strength of the diaphragm, and stimulate the breathing control centres in the brain.

 

Tablets, Capsules,Liquid

 

Take with food

Swallow tablets whole—

don’t chew or crush them

Don’t take before bedtime if one daily dose has been pre-scribed

Upset Stomach, heartburn, insomnia, headache, nervousness,  irritability, rapid heart rate.

Theo-bromine

Dark chocolate!

Bar!

non-prescription

Weight gain!

Caffeine

Coffee! (not decaffeinated)

Cup!

non-prescription

Sleeplessness!

Anti-Leukotrienes – Reduce some types of airway allergic reactions – NOT for immediate relief

Montelukast sodium

Zafirlukast

Singulair

Accolate

Reduces allergic reactions

Oral tablet

Take at bedtime.

Take as prescribed

Tiredness

(PDE4) Inhibitor
Roflumilast Daxas Anti Inflamatory - specifically intended for those with Chronic Bronchitis and frequent exacerbations Oral Tablet (500 mcg) Once daily as prescribed Most Common:  Diarrhea, anxiety, depression, headaches, weight loss, insomnia, irregular heartbeat

 Photographs & Chart prepared by C. Wigley COPD Patient, and updated/added to by J. Whitaker COPD Patient

IMPORTANT NOTE: This table cannot substitute for professional advice. You should take all your medications as prescribed by your physician. Contact your doctor’s office or pharmacist if you have questions or if you begin to suffer from any of the side effects listed above. The side effects listed are those more commonly experienced and are far from being complete.

Disclaimer:  The information above is far from all inclusive.   Additionally it has NOT been reviewed by a Dr. It is intended solely for information purposes only.  Dosage, alternative medicines, side effects etc are not included nor  listed here. It is important that you have your Dr. and/or pharmacist fully explain how these and other medicines work and what to expect.  ALWAYS ask questions and speak with your Dr.

     Same Drug, Different Name

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This page was last updated September, 2012