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Drugs

Side Effects
Serious

No serious side effects are associated with budesonide.
Common

Nasal inhalant: Nosebleeds or bloody nasal secretions, burning or irritation of the nasal passages, sore throat. Oral inhalation: Sore throat, white patches in mouth or throat, hoarseness.
Less Common

Eye pain, watering eyes, gradual decrease of vision, stomach pain and digestive disturbances.
Budesonide


Drug Class:
Respiratory corticosteroid

Available OTC?: No

Available Generic?: No

Available In
Why Prescribed
How It Works
Range and Frequency
Onset of Effect
Duration of Action
Dietary Advice
Storage
Missed Dose
Stopping the Drug
Prolonged Use
Over 60
Driving and Hazardous Work
Alcohol
Pregnancy
Breast Feeding
Infants and Children
Special Concerns
Overdose Symptoms
What to Do
Drug Interactions
Food Interactions
Disease Interactions


Available In
Nasal inhalant, oral inhalation, inhalation powder

Why Prescribed
To treat the symptoms of allergic rhinitis (seasonal and perennial allergies such as hay fever) and to prevent recurrence of nasal polyps after surgical removal.

How It Works
Respiratory corticosteroids such as budesonide primarily reduce or prevent inflammation of the lining of the airways, reduce the allergic response to inhaled allergens, and inhibit the secretion of mucus within the airways.

Range and Frequency
Nasal inhalant: 2 sprays (32 micrograms [mcg] each) in each nostril in the morning and evening or 4 sprays in each nostril in the morning. Oral inhalation: 200 to 800 mcg (1 to 4 inhalations), 2 times a day. Highest dose for children is 400 mcg (2 inhalations), 2 times a day. The dose may be increased or decreased as determined by your doctor, based on the patient's response.

Onset of Effect
Usually within several days; it may take 3 weeks for the full effect to occur.

Duration of Action
Up to 12 hours.

Dietary Advice
Budesonide can be taken without regard to diet.

Storage
Store in a dry place away from heat and light, out of the reach of children.

Missed Dose
Take the missed dose if you remember within an hour. Otherwise, skip the missed dose and return to your regular schedule. Do not double the next dose.

Stopping the Drug
Nasal inhalant: No problems expected. Oral inhalation: Do not discontinue without consulting your doctor. Gradual reduction in dosage may be required.

Prolonged Use
Consult with your doctor about the need for periodic physical examinations and laboratory tests.

Over 60
No special problems are expected.

Driving and Hazardous Work
Budesonide should not affect your ability to perform such tasks safely.

Alcohol
No special precautions are necessary.

Pregnancy
Nasal or inhaled steroids have not been reported to cause birth defects if taken during pregnancy. Before using such drugs, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

Breast Feeding
This drug may pass into breast milk. Consult your doctor about use of either form during breast feeding.

Infants and Children
Nasal form: Should be used only under close medical supervision. Oral form: Large doses may make children more susceptible to infectious disease. Long-term use may affect the adrenal glands.

Special Concerns
Inhaled steroids will not help an asthma attack in progress. Inhaled steroids can lower resistance to yeast infections of the mouth, throat, or voice box. To prevent yeast infections, gargle or rinse your mouth with water after each use; do not swallow the water. Know how to use the inhalant properly; read and follow the directions that come with the device. Before you have surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are using a steroid.

Overdose Symptoms
No specific symptoms.

What to Do
Call your doctor, emergency medical services (EMS), or the nearest poison control center if you have any reason to suspect an overdose.

Drug Interactions
Consult your doctor for specific advice if you are taking systemic corticosteroids, other inhaled corticosteroids, or any medications that suppress the immune system.

Food Interactions
No known food interactions.

Disease Interactions
Consult your doctor if you have any other medical problem, particularly glaucoma, a herpes infection of the eye, a history of tuberculosis, liver disease, an underactive thyroid, or osteoporosis.

Date Published: 04/13/2005
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