Generic Name: salbutamol (sulfate)
Product Name: Asmol uni-dose
Indication: What Asmol uni-dose is used for
Asmol uni-dose is a plastic ampoule which contains a medicine called salbutamol, as a liquid. The liquid is changed into a fine mist of droplets by the nebuliser.
In people who have difficulty breathing during exercise, Asmol uni-dose may also be used before exercise to keep the air passages open.
Your doctor may have prescribed Asmol uni-dose for another purpose. Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why Asmol uni-dose has been prescribed for you.
The medicine in Asmol uni-dose gives fast relief from your chest symptoms and is often called a ‘reliever’ medicine.
There is no evidence that Asmol uni-dose is addictive.
Action: How Asmol uni-dose works
Salbutamol belongs to a group of medicines called bronchodilators or beta-2 agonists. When your chest is tight or when you are wheezing, Asmol uni-dose is inhaled into the lungs and works rapidly to open up the air passages in your lungs to help you breathe more easily.
The active ingredient in Asmol uni-dose is salbutamol (as salbutamol sulfate). Asmol 2.5 uni-dose contains 2.5 mg of salbutamol in 2.5 mL of liquid. Asmol 5 uni-dose contains 5 mg of salbutamol in 2.5 mL of liquid.
Asmol uni-dose also contains sodium chloride and water for injections.
Asmol uni-dose is preservative free.
Dose advice: How to use Asmol uni-dose
Before you use Asmol uni-dose
When you must not use it
Do not use Asmol uni-dose if you have an allergy to any medicine containing salbutamol. Some of the symptoms of an allergic reaction may include:
- Shortness of breath;
- Wheezing or difficulty breathing;
- Swelling of the face, lips, tongue or other parts of the body;
- Rash, itching or hives on the skin.
Do not take Asmol uni-dose to stop a miscarriage or premature labour.
Do not use this medicine if the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering.
Do not take use this medicine if the expiry date (Exp.) printed on the pack has passed. Once a foil pack has been opened, the ampoules must be used within three months.
Before you start to use it
Tell your doctor if you have allergies to any other medicines, foods, dyes or preservatives.
Tell your doctor if you have or have had any of the following medical conditions:
- High blood pressure;
- Heart problems;
- Liver problems;
- Kidney problems;
- Thyroid conditions;
Tell your doctor if you had to stop taking this or any other asthma medicine for any reason.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. The ingredients of Asmol uni-dose are known to cross the placenta during pregnancy. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of using Asmol uni-dose when pregnant. It is important that asthma is managed well during pregnancy and you should not stop your medicine without asking your doctor.
Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or wish to breastfeed. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of using Asmol uni-dose when breastfeeding.
If you have not told your doctor about any of the above, tell them before you start using Asmol uni-dose.
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor if you are taking any other medicines, including medicines that you buy without a prescription from a pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.
Some medicines may interfere with Asmol uni-dose. These include:
- Medicines used to treat high blood pressure or other heart conditions;
- Medicines used to treat glaucoma, including those that are eye drops;
- Some cough and cold preparations;
- Some weight reducing medicines;
- Medicines used to treat depression or other mood disorders.
These medicines may be affected by Asmol or may affect how well it works. Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you what to do if you are taking any of these medicines. They also have a more complete list of medicines to be careful with or avoid while using Asmol uni-dose.
How to use Asmol uni-dose
Follow all directions given to you by your doctor or pharmacist carefully. They may differ from the information contained here.
Your doctor will tell you how much to use and when to use it.
How much to use
The dose varies from patient to patient. The pharmacist label will usually tell you how many ampoules to use and how often to use them. If you are not sure, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Adults: The usual dose is one 5 mg ampoule every four to six hours.
Elderly patients may need smaller doses.
Children: The usual dose is one 2.5 mg ampoule every four to six hours.
Your doctor will decide what dose you should take, how often you should take it and what strength of ampoule you should use.
If your chest condition suddenly gets worse, your doctor may tell you to increase your dose.
Tell your doctor as soon as possible if:
- Your Asmol uni-dose does not help your breathing as much as usual;
- The effect of your Asmol uni-dose does not last as long as usual or lasts less than 3 hours;
- You need more ampoules than usual of Asmol uni-dose to get relief.
These may be signs that your chest condition is getting worse.
How to use it
Do not swallow or inject the liquid into Asmol uni-dose.
Asmol uni-dose is for inhalation only, using a nebuliser. A nebuliser delivers the medicine in the form of a mist which you breathe into your lungs. You breathe in the mist through the face mask which is connected to the nebuliser.
Instructions on how to use Asmol uni-dose are included in the pack. Read these instructions carefully before using Asmol.
It is wise to visit your doctor or pharmacist from time to time to check that you are using your nebuliser in the right way. If you are not breathing the medicine correctly, the medicine may not be helping you as much as it could.
If you forget to use it
If you are using this medicine regularly and you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember.
Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose you missed.
If you miss more than one dose or are not sure what to do, check with your doctor or pharmacist.
If you use too much (overdose)
Immediately telephone your doctor or Poisons Information Centre (telephone 13 11 26) for advice, or go to Accident and Emergency at the nearest hospital, if you think that you or anyone else may have used too much Asmol. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning.
If you use too much Asmol uni-dose, you may feel shaky, tremble, have a fast heartbeat or have increased acid in the blood, which may cause an increased rate of breathing. These symptoms are usually mild side effects of using Asmol uni-dose. However, if they are severe or do not go away, it may be that you have taken too much Asmol uni-dose.
While you are using Asmol uni-dose
Things you must do
Important: If your breathing suddenly becomes more difficult or you get an immediate increase in wheezing just after using Asmol uni-dose, tell your doctor immediately or go to Accident and Emergency at the nearest hospital.
If you have an Asthma Action Plan that you have agreed with your doctor, follow it closely at all times.
If Asmol uni-dose does not help your breathing as much as usual, tell your doctor as soon as possible. If the effect of Asmol uni-dose does not last as long as usual or lasts less than three hours, tell your doctor as soon as possible. These may be signs that your condition is getting worse.
If you are about to start taking a new medicine, tell your doctor or pharmacist that you are using Asmol uni-dose.
If you become pregnant while using Asmol uni-dose, tell your doctor.
Tell all the doctors, dentists and pharmacists who are treating you that you are using Asmol uni-dose.
If you are going to have surgery, tell the surgeon or anaesthetist that you are taking this medicine. It may affect other medicines used during surgery.
Visit your doctor regularly so that they can check on your condition.
Things you must not do
Do not stop using Asmol uni-dose or lower the dose without checking with your doctor.
Do not let yourself run out of medicine over the weekend or on holidays.
Do not take any other medicines for your breathing problems without checking with your doctor.
Do not use Asmol uni-dose to treat any other complaints unless your doctor says to.
Do not give this medicine to anyone else, even if their symptoms seem similar to yours.
Things to be careful of
If you are mixing Asmol uni-dose with ipratropium bromide (another medicine for asthma) in your nebuliser, be careful not to let the mist get into your eyes. If the mist does get in your eyes and you get a headache with eye pain, red eyes or blurred vision, tell your doctor immediately.
After using Asmol uni-dose
Keep Asmol uni-dose in a cool dry place where the temperature stays below 30°C.
Keep the ampoules in the foil pack, with the foil lid closed, inside the box, until it is time to use them. If you take the ampoules out of the foil pack and box, they may not keep well.
Once a foil pack has been opened, the ampoules must be used within 3 months. Discard any ampoules left after this time.
After using the nebuliser, discard any liquid left in the nebuliser bowl, rinse and dry.
Do not keep Asmol uni-dose or any other medicine in the bathroom or near a sink. Do not leave it in the car or on window sills. Heat and dampness can destroy some medicines.
Keep your medicine where children cannot reach it. A locked cupboard at least one-and-a-half metres above the ground is a good place to store medicines.
If your doctor tells you to stop using this medicine, or your medicine has passed its expiry date, ask your pharmacist what to do with any ampoules that are left over.
Schedule of Asmol uni-dose
Asmol uni-dose is an S4 – prescription only medicine.
Side effects of Asmol uni-dose
Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are using Asmol uni-dose. Like all other medicines, Asmol unidose may have unwanted side effects in some people. Most of the side effects will be minor and temporary, but some may be serious. You may need medical treatment if you get some of the side effects.
Do not be alarmed by this list of possible side effects. You may not experience any of them.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist to answer any questions you may have.
If you have any of the following side effects, tell your doctor or pharmacist but do not stop using your Asmol uni-dose.
Tell your doctor if you experience any of the following and they worry you:
- Muscle cramps;
- Mouth or throat irritation;
- Feeling shaky or tense;
- Fine tremors, especially of the hands;
- Fast heartbeat;
- Restlessness in children;
- Nausea, feeling sick;
- Unusual feelings of warmth.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of the following happen:
Tell your doctor immediately or go to Accident and Emergency at the nearest hospital if any of the following happen:
- Severe dizziness, fainting or collapse;
- Swelling of the face, lips, mouth, throat, and neck which may cause difficulty in swallowing or breathing;
- Increased wheezing or difficulty breathing after using Asmol.
Very rarely, in people receiving high dose treatment with this medicine and in patients with an acute exacerbation of asthma, a serious condition called lactic acidosis, which affects the blood, may occur because of the build up of lactic acid. Your doctor may do tests to check this.
Asmol uni-dose may cause a fall in potassium levels in a few people. Your doctor may also do tests to check this.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you notice anything that is making you feel unwell while you are using, or soon after you have finished using Asmol uni-dose, even if it is not on this list. Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some people.
For further information talk to your doctor.