An Overview of Albuterol Abuse
is a prescription medication used to treat breathing problems, especially in people with asthma
. It is not a controlled substance
and is not usually thought of as a drug that can be abused. However, albuterol may be abused for several reasons, including weight loss and improving athletic performance.
Why Is Albuterol Abused?
Albuterol can have a stimulatory effect, increasing the blood pressure
and heart rate. It is possible that some people may abuse albuterol for its stimulant properties, although most people simply feel "jittery" from albuterol overuse. Because stimulants can cause weight loss, some people may overuse albuterol in an attempt to lose weight. Recently, there is more interest in using albuterol to increase athletic performance. Albuterol is not approved for any of these uses.
Possible Consequences of Abusing Albuterol
Overusing albuterol (for any use) can result in dangerous side effects. Albuterol can cause a very fast heart rate (tachycardia), high blood pressure
), and irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias). These side effects can increase your risk of a heart attack
, or other dangerous problems. Albuterol can be dangerous in people with an overactive thyroid
, or diabetes
. It is essential that albuterol be used only under the supervision of a healthcare provider.