Combivent is a type of metered-dose inhaler which contains a combination of ipratropium and albuterol. These bronchodilators help in relaxing muscles in the airways so that the air flow to the lungs increases. It is an inhaled medication for preventing bronchospasm among people who have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). There are other purposes even for which combivent may be used.
Composition of combivent
Combivent is an inhaled drug. Each of its dose has 2.5 mg salbutamol (in the form of salbutamol sulphate) and 0.50 mg of ipratropium bromide (in the form of ipratropium bromide monohydrate). The nonmedical ingredients in combivent are:
• Purified water
• Sodium chloride
• Hydrochloric acid
Uses of combivent
This medication helps in treating and preventing symptoms (like breathlessness and wheezing) that may be caused by some ongoing lung disease (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease- COPD including emphysema and bronchitis). This drug is a combination of two medications (albuterol and ipratropium). Both of them relax the muscles near the airways for opening up the lungs. Combivent helps in controlling the symptoms related to breathing problems.
Side-effects of combivent
There are many side-effects associated with the use of combivent that may require medical attention. Some of them may not require any at all. With time when the body adjusts to the medication, the side-effects may disappear. Some of the bothersome side-effects are:
• Body pain or aches
• Difficulty in breathing
• Cough producing mucus
• Ear congestion
• Runny nose
• Loss of voice
• Stuffy nose
• Sore throat
• Tightness inside the chest
• Cloudy or bloody urine
• Bladder pain
• Blurred vision
• Burning sensation while urinating
• Itching, numbness, crawling, prickling, or tingling feelings
• Chest pain
• Burning, painful, or difficult urination
• Slow, fast, pounding, racing, or irregular pulse or heartbeat
• Illness or a feeling of discomfort
• Frequent urge to urinate
• Increased sputum
• Joint pain
• Side or lower back pain
• Loss of appetite
• Muscle pains or aches
• Noisy breathing
• Pounding sounds in the ears
• Shakiness in the arms, feet, legs, or hands
• Swollen, tender glands in the neck
• Trouble sleeping
• Changes in the voice
• Trouble swallowing
• Hives or skin rash
• Swelling of the lips, face, throat, or mouth
• Chest discomfort
• Decrease in the volume of urine
• Skin turning red
• Dry mouth
• Sour or acid stomach
Contraindications of combivent
People having any of the following conditions should not be allowed to use combivent:
• Allergic reaction to beta-adrenergic agents anticholinergics-quatern ipratropium analogues
• High blood pressure
• Closed angle glaucoma
• Abnormal heart rhythm
• Overactive thyroid gland
• Excess amount of body acid
• Paradoxical bronchospasm
Combivent and pregnancy
The safety of combivent use is not yet determined during the time of pregnancy. It should be used only if the benefits are far more than the risks involved.
Action Plan For Asthma
When one is attacked with asthma, one needs to stay absolutely calm and think of what the avenues are and what can be done. One while maintaining their composure need to think of what can be done. Personalized asthma attack plan can help one reduce the stress to as much extent as possible and also gives one immense sense of control, if the asthma attack develops. Thinking ahead also helps one plan the treatments/ cures to turn to helping one select the right medications to deal with the set of circumstances.
How To Create Your Asthma Action Plan
While beginning, one needs to prepare a plan with the medications to be taken in response to the symptoms. And the plan needs to have the medications and the actions suggested for the following:
- Shortness of breath and a feeling of tightness/ stiffness in the chest
- Coughing during the early morning period or in the night
If you cannot identify the signs and the symptoms of asthma, you need to use the peak flow meter which is a device which can be used to measure the body’s ability to push out the air off the lungs. And this device can be used to mark the changes when you are calm and peaceful (no asthma attack) and when you feel a bit restless (a case of an asthma attack). These reading then need to be showed to the doctor and an action plan needs to be drawn.
Preparing For An Attack
While preparing for an attack of asthma, one needs to remember that asthma might attack anytime, despite you not having it since a long time. While preparing, one needs to understand the following:
- Know what triggers the asthma attack: One needs to know what the trigger points of asthma like the pet dander, dead skin, seasonal allergies, smoke, perfumes and scents, and respiratory infections.
- Share the asthma action plan with people you spend time with at home or workplace: The people you work with or family members need to know what to do, if an asthma attack occurs.
- Keep all the medications accessible: As long as it is possible, a rescue inhaler should be kept handy, and should be available in numbers. It should ideally be kept in the common drawer known to all. It should also be available in your bag, which ever you use. Maybe some other medicines like the steroid tablets also need to be kept handy.
- Write down the important/ emergency numbers for calling:The action plan also needs to feature some important numbers like, your family and friend’s numbers, doctor’s number, closest emergency room’s number. A card can be kept with these details in your purse or bag
- Know about the time when help needs to be asked for: Ask for additional help if need be while making your colleagues and family members aware.
Basically preparation in advance is absolutely crucial when it comes to asthma. Asthma usually gives no time and hence, as much lesser response time to the attack, the better it is.
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