How Cromolyn Inhalation Works and What to Discuss With Your Doctor
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking cromolyn inhalation if you have:
- Kidney disease, including kidney failure (renal failure)
- Liver disease, including liver failure or cirrhosis
- Any allergies, including allergies to food (especially milk), dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Intal and Pregnancy)
- Breastfeeding (see Intal and Breastfeeding).
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you are currently taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
(Click Precautions and Warnings With Cromolyn Inhalation for more information, including information on who should not take the drug.)
Normally, air moves easily into and out of the lungs through a network of airways. If you have asthma, however, the inside walls of your airways are inflamed (swollen). The inflammation makes the airways sensitive, and they tend to react strongly to things that you are allergic to or find irritating (see Asthma Triggers). When the airways react, a few things happen: The muscles around these airways tighten, inflammation inside the airways increases, and cells inside the airways produce more mucus. This narrows the airways and makes it harder to breathe.
Cromolyn inhalation is an asthma medication that belongs to a group of drugs called mast cell stabilizers. In response to allergens (substances that cause allergic reactions) and certain conditions, mast cells in the body (especially the lungs) release chemicals that cause the airways to react and tighten. By stabilizing the mast cells, cromolyn inhalation prevents mast cells from releasing the chemicals, which prevents asthma attacks due to exercise, aspirin, cold air, and allergens.
(Click Asthma Treatment for information about other medicines used for treating asthma.)