Albuturol or Pulmicort for Maintanece? I'm Confused.

Updated on January 23, 2009
L.W. asks from Denton, TX
5 answers

My 3 year old son was diagnosed with allergy induced asthma. He has had a 4 day flare up with wheezing so I have been giving him Albuterol through a nebulizer every 4 hours. On day 4 his wheezing finally subsided. My allergist gave me pulmicort to use in conjuction with the albuterol. He also said to use one or two treatments per day for six weeks after an attack as maintenance. I am new to this so I am very confused. Do I use the pulmicort or the albuterol as the maintainece or do I mix the two together? That is another thing. The Doctor said it was okay to mix the two, however, the pamphlet insert with the pulmicort says NOT to mix with any other inhaled steroids. So which is correct?

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answers from Dallas on

My 3 yr old has the same meds. Albuterol is a bronchodilator -- only for when he's wheezing. Pulmicort -- an inhaled steroid -- is your daily maintenance. We do pulmicort every night no matter what. When he's having a flare-up and is wheezing, we step up pulmicort to morning and night, and use albuterol every 4 hours until he's back under control. we add albuterol in with the pulmicort when it's time for pulmicort, otherwise it's just albuterol. So, when there's a flare up, it might look like this:

8am pulmicort and albuterol in the nebulizer
noon -- just albuterol
4pm -- just albuterol
8pm -- pulmicort and albuterol
midnight (if necessary) -- albuterol

Usually what happens is a flare up will require albuterol every 4 hours for a day or so -- even through the night. Then it dies down to where he might just need albuterol a couple times during the day. We'll keep pulmicort twice a day for several days afterwards, then go back to once a day.

It took us several months to figure out what all this looks like for him, and how much we can control on our own -- without running to the ER or urgent care. If we make it through March, we will have made it a full year without an asthma-related ER visit!!

Welcome to Denton :-) My 5 yr old refers to Denton Regional hospital as "Joel's hospital"

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

The Pulmicort is for maintenance. Albuterol is not an inhaled steroid. You can mix the two if needed at the same time....



answers from Dallas on

We mixed the two. The Pulimort worked well for my son but it made him crazy...he was uncontrolably hyper when he was on it. Hopefully this won't happen to your son but I just wanted you to be forewarned.



answers from Dallas on

I use the albuturol and pulmicort when needed. I also use a humidfier in my son's room. It also help. The albuturol can make them hyper. Hope this helps.



answers from Dallas on

My son uses Xopenex because the Albuterol would make him feel shaky/nervous. We only use it when he is having a flare up, usually for a day or two.

I would strongly suggest calling your allergist to verify what he wants you to do, especially since the pulmicort says not to mix with any other inhaled steroids.

I hope your son starts feeling better soon. I know asthma attacks can be scary. Hopefully these medications will help to manage.

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