Levalbuterol HFA Dosing
For most people who are treating an asthma attack with levalbuterol HFA, dosing is usually two sprays (as frequently as every four to six hours). However, other people may only need one spray to control asthma symptoms. To help ensure a safe and effective treatment process, your levalbuterol HFA dosage should be taken as prescribed, and you should know exactly how to use the inhaler.
The dose of levalbuterol HFA (Xopenex HFA®) that your healthcare provider recommends will vary depending on a number of factors, including:
- Whether you use levalbuterol HFA to treat or prevent asthma attacks
- The severity of your asthma or other respiratory problems
- Other medications you may be taking.
As is always the case, do not adjust your levalbuterol HFA dose unless your healthcare provider specifically instructs you to do so.
Levalbuterol HFA Dosing for Bronchospasm
To treat or prevent spasms of the airway (bronchospasms) due to asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the recommended levalbuterol HFA dose is two sprays as needed, as frequently as every four to six hours. For some people, only one spray every four hours will be needed to control asthma symptoms. If you need to use your levalbuterol HFA asthma inhaler more often than prescribed, talk to your healthcare provider about adding an additional asthma medication.
If levalbuterol HFA is not adequately controlling an asthma attack, seek medical attention immediately, as this may be an emergency.
Some considerations for people taking levalbuterol HFA include the following:
- Levalbuterol HFA comes in a metered-dose inhaler (called an "MDI").
- Some people take levalbuterol HFA only when they need it (during an asthma attack), while others take it regularly to help prevent attacks.
- You should "test spray" each levalbuterol HFA inhaler before your first use of it, or if you have not used it for more than three days. To test spray the inhaler, spray it into the air four times by pressing on the top of the canister.
- Shake your levalbuterol HFA asthma inhaler gently before each use.
- Wait at least one minute in between inhalations.
- It is important to learn exactly how to use your levalbuterol HFA inhaler. It may be difficult at first and may require practice.
- The spray should be inhaled into the lungs, not sprayed onto the back of the throat and swallowed. To accomplish this, you will need to breathe in while spraying the inhaler.
- Most people put the mouthpiece of the inhaler directly into their mouths. However, many healthcare professionals now recommend placing the inhaler an inch or two away from the mouth. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way for you to use the inhaler.
- Each inhaler contains 200 sprays. Try to keep track of approximately how many sprays you have used in order to know when to replace the inhaler. Do not place the inhaler in water to see if it is empty (although it was recommended to do so in the past).
- Be sure that you always have a levalbuterol HFA asthma inhaler on hand (and that your levalbuterol HFA prescription has refills), as failing to treat an asthma attack can quickly turn into a medical emergency.
- If you are unsure about anything related to levalbuterol HFA or your levalbuterol HFA dosage, please talk to your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.