Topics: Asthma, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Lung Pages: 2 (710 words) Published: January 19, 2011
By definition, a bronchodilator is a drug used for the treatment of chronic breathing complications such as emphysema, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease also known as COPD. Bronchodilators are used to reverse the effect of obstructed airways acting as decompressor and mucus removers that cause breathing complications. There is short term or short acting bronchodilators that act as “rescue medications” ( These rescue medications are used in more emergency instances as with asthma. Long-acting bronchodilators are used for the maintance of such diseases as COPD which is more chronic. Each bronchodilator type “opens bronchial tubes so that air can move through…. And help clear mucus from lungs ( Bronchodilators such as uniphyl and Phyllocontin come in the form of a pill or tablet and are a sustained release formulation of another drug called Theophylline which opens constricted lung passages. These are more long term treatments. Short term or more frequent usage as with advair, symbicort, serevent, Foradil, are inhaled and last between two and four hours while long term tablets use lasts upwards of 12 hours. Although bronchodilators provide control over congested airways, they also act as stimulants and have an array of side effects. These side effects include: nervousness, hyperactivity, heart palpations, upset stomach, trouble sleeping, and muscle aches. Bronchodilators are approved by the FDA and originated in emergency room settings, where the necessity was abundant for chronic asthma attack patients. Albuterol, commonly used for the maintenance of asthma in an inhaler form is often however more effective than most other long acting bronchodilators. Albuterol is considered an anticholinergic bronchodilator. As previously mentioned, theophylline, an inexpensive bronchodilator acts as a stimulant similar to caffeine. Theophylline stimulants the heart and nervous system, relaxing airway muscles. Some side...
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