Budesonide Inhalation

BUDESONIDE INHALATION- budesonide suspension
American Health Packaging


1.1 Maintenance Treatment of Asthma

Budesonide inhalation suspension is indicated for the maintenance treatment of asthma and as prophylactic therapy in children 12 months to 8 years of age.

Limitations of Use:

  • Budesonide inhalation suspension is NOT indicated for the relief of acute bronchospasm.


The recommended starting dose and highest recommended dose of budesonide inhalation suspension, based on prior asthma therapy, are listed in the following table.

Previous Therapy

Recommended Starting Dose

Highest Recommended Dose

Bronchodilators alone

0.5 mg total daily dose administered either once daily or twice daily in divided doses

0.5 mg total daily dose

Inhaled Corticosteroids

0.5 mg total daily dose administered either once daily or twice daily in divided doses

1 mg total daily dose

Oral Corticosteroids

1 mg total daily dose administered either as 0.5 mg twice daily

1 mg total daily dose

2.1 Dosing Recommendations

Dosing recommendations based on previous therapy are as follows:

  • Bronchodilators alone: 0.5 mg once daily or 0.25 mg twice daily
  • Inhaled corticosteroids: 0.5 mg once daily or 0.25 mg twice daily up to 0.5 mg twice daily
  • Oral corticosteroids: 0.5 mg twice daily

In symptomatic children not responding to non-steroidal therapy, a starting dose of 0.25 mg once daily may be considered. If once-daily treatment does not provide adequate control, the total daily dose should be increased and/or administered as a divided dose. In all patients, it is desirable to downward-titrate to the lowest effective dose once asthma stability is achieved.

2.2 Directions for Use

Budesonide inhalation suspension should be administered via jet nebulizer connected to an air compressor with an adequate air flow, equipped with a mouthpiece or suitable face mask. Ultrasonic nebulizers are not suitable for the adequate administration of budesonide inhalation suspension and, therefore, are NOT recommended.

The effects of mixing budesonide inhalation suspension with other nebulizable medications have not been adequately assessed. Budesonide inhalation suspension should be administered separately in the nebulizer [see Patient Counseling Information (17.1)].

A Pari-LC-Jet Plus Nebulizer (with face mask or mouthpiece) connected to a Pari Master compressor was used to deliver budesonide inhalation suspension to each patient in 3 U.S. controlled clinical studies. The safety and efficacy of budesonide inhalation suspension delivered by other nebulizers and compressors have not been established.


Budesonide inhalation suspension is available in single strength: 0.5 mg/ 2mL. Budesonide inhalation suspension is supplied in sealed aluminum foil envelopes each containing one single-dose ampule. There are 30 ampules in a carton. Each single-dose ampule contains 2 mL of sterile liquid suspension.


The use of budesonide inhalation suspension is contraindicated in the following conditions:


5.1 Local Effects

In clinical trials with budesonide inhalation suspension, localized infections with Candida albicans occurred in the mouth and pharynx in some patients. The incidences of localized infections of Candida albicans were similar between the placebo and budesonide inhalation suspension treatment groups. If these infections develop, they may require treatment with appropriate local or systemic antifungal therapy and/or discontinuance of treatment with budesonide inhalation suspension. Patients should rinse the mouth after inhalation of budesonide inhalation suspension.

5.2 Deterioration of Disease and Acute Asthma Episodes

Budesonide inhalation suspension is not a bronchodilator and is not indicated for the rapid relief of acute bronchospasm or other acute episodes of asthma.

Patients should be instructed to contact their physician immediately if episodes of asthma not responsive to their usual doses of bronchodilators occur during the course of treatment with budesonide inhalation suspension. During such episodes, patients may require therapy with oral corticosteroids.

5.3 Hypersensitivity Reactions Including Anaphylaxis

Hypersensitivity reactions including anaphylaxis, rash, contact dermatitis, urticaria, angioedema, and bronchospasm have been reported with use of budesonide inhalation suspension. Discontinue budesonide inhalation suspension if such reactions occur [see Contraindications (4)].

5.4 Immunosuppression

Patients who are on drugs that suppress the immune system are more susceptible to infection than healthy individuals. Chicken pox and measles, for example, can have a more serious or even fatal course in susceptible children or adults using corticosteroids. In children or adults who have not had these diseases, or been properly immunized, particular care should be taken to avoid exposure. How the dose, route, and duration of corticosteroid administration affect the risk of developing a disseminated infection is not known. The contribution of the underlying disease and/or prior corticosteroid treatment to the risk is also not known. If exposed to chicken pox, therapy with varicella zoster immune globulin (VZIG) or pooled intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG), as appropriate, may be indicated. If exposed to measles, prophylaxis with pooled intramuscular immunoglobulin (IG) may be indicated (see the respective package inserts for complete VZIG and IG prescribing information). If chicken pox develops, treatment with antiviral agents may be considered.

The clinical course of chicken pox or measles infection in patients on inhaled corticosteroids has not been studied. However, a clinical study has examined the immune responsiveness of asthma patients 12 months to 8 years of age who were treated with budesonide inhalation suspension. An open- label non-randomized clinical study examined the immune responsiveness of varicella vaccine in 243 asthma patients 12 months to 8 years of age who were treated with budesonide inhalation suspension 0.25 mg to 1 mg daily (n=151) or non-corticosteroid asthma therapy (n=92) (i.e., beta 2 -agonists, leukotriene receptor antagonists, cromones). The percentage of patients developing a seroprotective antibody titer of ≥5.0 (gpELISA value) in response to the vaccination was similar in patients treated with budesonide inhalation suspension (85%) compared to patients treated with non-corticosteroid asthma therapy (90%). No patient treated with budesonide inhalation suspension developed chicken pox as a result of vaccination.

Inhaled corticosteroids should be used with caution, if at all, in patients with active or quiescent tuberculosis infection of the respiratory tract, untreated systemic fungal, bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections; or ocular herpes simplex.

5.5 Transferring Patients from Systemic Corticosteroid Therapy

Particular care is needed for patients who are transferred from systemically active corticosteroids to inhaled corticosteroids because deaths due to adrenal insufficiency have occurred in asthmatic patients during and after transfer from systemic corticosteroids to less systemically available inhaled corticosteroids. After withdrawal from systemic corticosteroids, a number of months are required for recovery of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA)-axis function.

Patients who have been previously maintained on 20 mg or more per day of prednisone (or its equivalent) may be most susceptible, particularly when their systemic corticosteroids have been almost completely withdrawn.

During this period of HPA-axis suppression, patients may exhibit signs and symptoms of adrenal insufficiency when exposed to trauma, surgery, infection (particularly gastroenteritis) or other conditions associated with severe electrolyte loss. Although budesonide inhalation suspension may provide control of asthma symptoms during these episodes, in recommended doses it supplies less than normal physiological amounts of glucocorticosteroid systemically and does NOT provide the mineralocorticoid activity that is necessary for coping with these emergencies.

During periods of stress or a severe asthma attack, patients who have been withdrawn from systemic corticosteroids should be instructed to resume oral corticosteroids (in large doses) immediately and to contact their physicians for further instructions. These patients should also be instructed to carry a medical identification card indicating that they may need supplementary systemic corticosteroids during periods of stress or a severe asthma attack.

Patients requiring oral corticosteroids should be weaned slowly from systemic corticosteroid use after transferring to budesonide inhalation suspension. Initially, budesonide inhalation suspension should be used concurrently with the patient’s usual maintenance dose of systemic corticosteroid. After approximately one week, gradual withdrawal of the systemic corticosteroid may be initiated by reducing the daily or alternate daily dose. Further incremental reductions may be made after an interval of one or two weeks, depending on the response of the patient. Generally, these decrements should not exceed 25% of the prednisone dose or its equivalent. A slow rate of withdrawal is strongly recommended.

Lung function (FEV 1 or AM PEF), beta-agonist use, and asthma symptoms should be carefully monitored during withdrawal of oral corticosteroids. In addition to monitoring asthma signs and symptoms, patients should be observed for signs and symptoms of adrenal insufficiency such as fatigue, lassitude, weakness, nausea and vomiting, and hypotension.

Transfer of patients from systemic corticosteroid therapy to budesonide inhalation suspension may unmask allergic or other immunologic conditions previously suppressed by the systemic corticosteroid therapy, e.g., rhinitis, conjunctivitis, eosinophilic conditions, eczema, and arthritis [see Dosage and Administration (2)].

During withdrawal from oral corticosteroids, patients may experience symptoms of systemically active corticosteroid withdrawal (e.g., joint and/or muscular pain, lassitude, depression) despite maintenance or even improvement of respiratory function.

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