COPD | Drug Treatment Guide

COPD Drug Treatment Guide

What COPD Patients Should Know About Symbicort

When it comes to managing an illness or condition, finding the right medication is not always a simple task. Everyone’s body can react differently to the same medication, and what works for one might not be a good fit for another. Our lifestyles and other factors can also make some medications better suited than others. That’s why it’s crucial to talk to your doctor and be as informed as possible about all treatment options for your condition.

For those with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), one medication is Symbicort. The Symbicort inhaler is a combination drug to control COPD, which means it works in two ways. First, it relaxes the muscles around the airways in the chest. Second, it acts as a steroid to reduce inflammation in the chest, which helps to open the airways and allow more air to flow in and out of the lungs.

Here’s what you’ll need to know if you’re considering using Symbicort to treat COPD:

  • Talk to your doctor before you receive any vaccines. Steroids can increase your risk of infection while using Symbicort for COPD.

  • While using Symbicort, you may need to monitor blood sugar and bone density during treatment, as an increase of glucose levels and a loss of bone density are risks of taking Symbicort.

  • Side effects of Symbicort include trouble speaking, confusion, pain in your bones, muscle cramps, stomach aches, dizziness, rapid heartbeat, nervousness, or excitement.

  • Consult with your doctor regularly to make sure Symbicort is working for you. If you are not feeling better while using Symbicort for COPD, you may want to try a different medication. Your doctor can help you pick one that’s right for you.

Symbicort is a long-term medication for COPD that can manage and prevent symptoms, such as flare-ups and lung damage. Treating your COPD with a maintenance therapy drug like Symbicort can reduce your dependence on rescue inhalers and make daily life a little easier.

For more information, here’s an overview of other COPD treatment options.

Punkaj Khanna, Pharm. D.

This video features Punkaj Khanna, Pharm. D.. Punkaj Khanna earned his Pharm.D. from Massachusetts College of Pharmacy. He works at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and has special interests in patient education and compliance.

Duration: 01:46. Last Updated On: 2015-10-15
Reviewed by: Dr. Preeti Parikh . Review date: October 28, 2014