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How do I know if my asthma is well-controlled?

Asthma is well-controlled if you:1

  • Experience symptoms fewer than 2 days/week
  • Wake from sleep (due to asthma symptoms) fewer than 1-2 days/month
  • Can participate in all your normal activities
  • Use quick-relief medications no more than 2 days/week
  • Have no more than 1 attack/year that requires an oral corticosteroid
  • Have peak flow readings that stay above 80 percent of your personal best
Can asthma get worse?

Unfortunately, the answer is yes. The goal of treating asthma is finding the right level of control with the least amount of medicine so the condition doesn’t worsen. The following are signs of uncontrolled asthma that your doctor may want to address, to help better control the asthma in your airways.2

  • Symptoms start to occur more often, are more severe, and/or are bothersome at night, causing you to lose sleep
  • Normal activities, such as school or work, are limited because of your asthma
  • Your peak flow number is low compared to your personal best or varies from day to day
  • You’ve noticed that your asthma medicines don't seem to work as well anymore
  • A quick-relief inhaler is needed more than 2 days a week
  • You’re forced to visit the ER or visit your doctor because of an asthma attack
How does Alvesco work?

Alvesco (ciclesonide) is a synthetic corticosteroid for oral inhalation.3

Corticosteroids are natural anti-inflammatory substances found in the body, which have been shown to reduce inflammation associated with asthma. Alvesco Inhalation Aerosol may help reduce airway inflammation and has been shown to help keep asthma symptoms under control.3

It is important to note that Alvesco is not a bronchodilator and should not be used for the relief of sudden asthma symptoms.3

Alvesco is only indicated for use in adults and adolescents 12 years of age and older.3

How is Alvesco different from other inhaled corticosteroids (ICS)?

Alvesco has a small particle size that enables it to reach deep into the small airways.4,5 This helps target its anti-inflammatory effect on the small airways.6 Other ICS products with larger particle sizes tend to stay in the large airways and not reach as many of the small airways.4

Alvesco has been shown to improve lung function and reduce asthma symptoms in clinical trials.3

What are the most common side effects of Alvesco?

The most common side effects with Alvesco Inhalation Aerosol include:3

  • headache
  • swelling of nose and throat (nasopharyngitis)
  • swelling of the sinuses (sinusitis)
  • throat pain
  • upper respiratory infection
  • joint pain (arthralgia)
  • nasal congestion
  • pain in arms, legs, and back
What should I tell my healthcare provider before using Alvesco Inhalation Aerosol?

Before you use Alvesco Inhalation Aerosol, tell your healthcare provider if you:3

  • have or have had eye problems such as increased ocular pressure, glaucoma, or cataracts.
  • have any infections including tuberculosis or ocular herpes simplex.
  • have not had or been vaccinated for chicken pox or measles.
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if Alvesco Inhalation Aerosol will harm your unborn baby. Talk to your healthcare provider if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if Alvesco Inhalation Aerosol passes into your breast milk. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way to feed your baby if you are using Alvesco Inhalation Aerosol.

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins and herbal supplements.

Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of them to show your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you get a new medicine.

References:

  1. National Institutes of Health (NIH). National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). How is Asthma Treated and Controlled? https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/asthma/treatment. Accessed Oct 17, 2017.
  2. National Institutes of Health (NIH). National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI).What are the Signs and Symptoms of Asthma? https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/asthma/signs. Accessed Oct 17, 2017.
  3. Alvesco® Inhalation Aerosol Prescribing Information. Marlborough, United Kingdom: Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc.; January 2013.
  4. Newman S, Salmon A, Nave R, Drollman A. High lung deposition of 99mTc-labeled ciclesonide administered via HFA-MDI to patients with asthma. Respiratory Medicine. 2006;100:375-384.
  5. Derendorf H, Nave R, Drollman A, et al. Relevance of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of inhaled corticosteroids to asthma. Eur Respir J. 2006;28:1042-1050.
  6. Rohatagi S, Arya V, Zech K, et al. Population pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of ciclesonide. J Clin Pharmacol. 2003;43:365 -378.