Ipratropium HFA Inhaler Dosing
If you are treating chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with an ipratropium HFA inhaler, dosing guidelines are the same, regardless of age, weight, or other factors. The standard dose is two inhalations four times a day. If this ipratropium HFA inhaler dosage does not adequately control your symptoms, however, your healthcare provider may recommend that you take additional doses.
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There is only one standard dose of the ipratropium HFA inhaler (Atrovent® HFA), regardless of your age, weight, or other medical conditions. As is always the case, do not adjust your dose unless your healthcare provider specifically instructs you to do so.
The recommended starting dose for treating chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including emphysema and chronic bronchitis, is two inhalations of the ipratropium HFA inhaler four times a day. Your healthcare provider may recommend that you take additional doses as needed. However, you should not take more than 12 inhalations in 24 hours.
Considerations for people taking the ipratropium HFA inhaler include the following:
- The medication comes in a metered-dose inhaler (called an "MDI"). It is usually taken four times a day.
- You should prime each inhaler before your first use of it, or if you have not used it for more than three days. To prime the inhaler, spray it into the air twice by pressing on the top of the canister.
- Unlike most other inhalers, the ipratropium HFA inhaler does not need to be shaken.
- It is important that you learn exactly how to use your ipratropium HFA inhaler. It may be difficult at first and may require some 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 it an inch or two away from the mouth. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way for you to use the inhaler. If you have difficulty using it, your healthcare provider may recommend a spacer, a device that makes it easier to use the inhaler.
- Each inhaler contains 200 sprays. When the dose counter on the mouthpiece counts down to "0" doses, discard the inhaler, even if it feels like there is a little medication left, as accurate dosing cannot be assured after 200 doses.
- For the ipratropium HFA inhaler to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. The ipratropium medication will not work if you stop taking it.
- If you are unsure about anything related to the ipratropium HFA inhaler or your dosage, talk to your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist. Do not stop taking the drug without first discussing it with your healthcare provider.