BUDESONIDE/FORMOTEROL metered dose inhaler

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    Last updated: June 2023


    Prescription under medical supervision


    Therapeutic action

    • Combination of inhaled corticosteroid (budesonide) and long-acting beta-2 agonist bronchodilator (formoterol)


    • Long term treatment of chronic asthma (maintenance and symptomatic treatment)

    Forms and strengths

    • Solution or suspension for inhalation in pressurised metered dose inhaler, delivering 80 micrograms of budesonide and 4.5 micrograms of formoterol fumarate/puff 


    Start at the step most appropriate to initial severity. 


    Moderate persistent asthma 

    • Child 6 to 11 years: 1 puff once daily (very low dose) and 1 puff when symptomatic (max. 8 puffs daily)


    Severe persistent asthma 

    • Child 6 to 11 years: 1 puff 2 times daily (low dose) and 1 puff when symptomatic (max. 8 puffs daily)


    • As long as required. Re-evaluate after 2 to 3 months if doses are adequate or need to be increased or decreased.

    Administration technique

    • Shake the inhaler. Remove the mouthpiece cover.
    • Breathe in and breathe out as completely as possible. Place the lips tightly around the mouthpiece. Inhale deeply while activating the inhaler. Hold breath 10 seconds before exhaling.
    • Hand-breath co-ordination is difficult in children. Use a spacer to facilitate administration and improve the efficacy of treatment.

    Contra-indications, adverse effects, precautions

    • Do not administer to children with untreated respiratory infection.
    • May cause:
      • throat irritation, hoarseness and cough at the beginning of treatment; oro-pharyngeal candidiasis; adrenal suppression with high doses for prolonged periods;
      • headache, tremor and tachycardia, hyperglycaemia; hypokalaemia (after high doses).
    • Pregnancy: no contra-indication
    • Breast-feeding: no contra-indication


    • Relief of symptoms may require several days or weeks of continuous therapy. 
    • Clean the mouthpiece before and after each use.
    • Do not pierce or incinerate used aerosol containers (risk of explosion).
    • Budesonide/formoterol may also be available as a dry powder inhaler. Doses are the same as for metered dose inhaler.
    • Manufacturers may express the content per inhaler actuation in "metered dose" or "delivered dose".


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