What is Azmacort&Reg;?

Jacquelyn Gilchrist

Azmacort® is a brand name for the generic medicine triamcinolone oral inhalation. It is a corticosteroid used to alleviate symptoms of asthma, such as shortness of breath, labored breathing, and wheezing. As of 31 December 2010, this medicine is withdrawn from the United States (US) market, however patients in other countries may still be prescribed Azmacort®.

Azmacort may help prevent asthma attacks.
Azmacort may help prevent asthma attacks.

This medication is not a fast-acting asthma drug, so patients should use another medicine for asthma attacks that are already underway. Azmacort® is intended to help prevent attacks. It is typically inhaled three to four times daily. Those using this drug should never inhale more of it than the doctor prescribes.

Sinus pain is one possible side effect of Azmacort.
Sinus pain is one possible side effect of Azmacort.

Before using Azmacort®, patients should shake the device briskly and take off the protective cap. The patient must then exhale through the nose as much as possible, keeping his mouth shut while doing so. After exhaling, he may then insert the mouthpiece into his mouth, past his teeth. The lips should seal tightly around the mouthpiece.

Patients may then take a deep breath through the mouth while pressing down on the asthma inhaler. The medication must enter the throat in order to work. After holding his breath for about five to 10 seconds, the patient may then remove the device and slowly exhale. When the doctor prescribes two puffs at a time with the inhaler, the patient should wait two minutes before repeating these steps.

Azmacort® may lead to an increased risk of oral yeast infections. After using the device, patients should rinse their mouths with water or mouthwash, and then spit it out. Corticosteroids may also make a person more susceptible to contracting infections, so patients should avoid exposure to diseases and wash their hands regularly. Aspirin and alcohol should be used with caution, as the drug can make the stomach and intestines more prone to irritation.

This medication may result in some side effects, and patients should inform their doctor if these become bothersome. Side effects can include difficult or painful speech, sinus pain, and cough. Hoarseness and dryness or irritation in the mouth or throat can occur. People should get immediate medical help if they experience more serious side effects such as white sores in the mouth, problems breathing, and vision problems. A persistent infection or cold, muscle weakness, and swelling of the face or lower legs may also occur.

Azmacort® may cause birth defects, so pregnant women should avoid using it. As of 2011, it is unknown whether the drug passes into breast milk. Patients should disclose all other medications and supplements they take, as well as their other medical conditions.

Azmacort can be used to treat wheezing and shortness of breath.
Azmacort can be used to treat wheezing and shortness of breath.

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