Tempe, Arizona (NAPSI) - People with asthma and those who care about them may have a reason to breathe easier.
That’s because there are ways for them to help take control of their condition, and it all starts with a short quiz: the Asthma Control Test™ (ACT).
While not a substitute for a health care professional’s diagnosis, this online tool is designed to help people with asthma and their doctors determine the level of control patients have over the condition and the impact asthma has on them.
Asthmatics always have some inflammation or swelling in the airways of their lungs.
The key is to find a way to control the inflammation to minimize swelling. Inflammation can make airways more sensitive to environmental asthma triggers such as pollen, dust and smoke. These triggers can intensify asthma symptoms, such as shortness of breath, wheezing, tightness of the chest and coughing.
Fortunately, with guidance from a health care professional and appropriate medication, these symptoms can be kept under control and those with asthma can maintain their lifestyle.
This means they can avoid shortness of breath. And fewer symptoms means they shouldn’t need to rely on their rescue medicine as frequently.
It’s important to remember that medicines that help control persistent asthma are different from rescue medicines and should not be used to treat sudden asthma symptoms. The key is to manage the condition and avoid emergencies that require using a rescue medicine.
That means finding a medicine that can help you to maintain asthma control.
SYMBICORT (budesonide/formoterol fumarate dihydrate) is a medicine designed to help control asthma. It’s approved for patients 12 years and older whose asthma is not well controlled on a long-term asthma control medicine, or whose disease severity warrants it. It contains two medicines to help reduce the inflammation in the lungs and keep airways open.
When used as prescribed, it has been shown to help significantly improve lung function, starting within 15 minutes. It is important, however, to remember that SYMBICORT will not replace a rescue inhaler for sudden symptoms.
Taking The Asthma Control Test™
To learn more about asthma and to take the self-assessment quiz, visit MySymbicort.com/ACT
Important Safety Information About SYMBICORT for Asthma
SYMBICORT contains formoterol, a long-acting beta2-adrenergic agonist (LABA). LABA medicines such as formoterol increase the risk of death from asthma problems. It is not known whether budesonide, the other medicine in SYMBICORT, reduces the risk of death from asthma problems seen with formoterol.
SYMBICORT should be used only if your health care provider decides that your asthma is not well controlled with a long-term asthma control medicine, such as an inhaled corticosteroid, or that your asthma is severe enough to begin treatment with SYMBICORT.
If you are taking SYMBICORT, see your health care provider if your asthma does not improve or gets worse. It is important that your health care provider assess your asthma control on a regular basis. Your doctor will decide if it is possible for you to stop taking SYMBICORT and start taking a long-term asthma control medicine without loss of asthma control.
Children and adolescents who take LABA medicines may have an increased risk of being hospitalized for asthma problems.
SYMBICORT does not replace rescue inhalers for sudden asthma symptoms.
Be sure to tell your health care provider about all your health conditions, including heart conditions or high blood pressure, and all medicines you may be taking. Some patients taking SYMBICORT may experience increased blood pressure, heart rate or change in heart rhythm.
Do not use SYMBICORT more often than prescribed. While taking SYMBICORT, never use another medicine containing a LABA for any reason. Ask your health care provider or pharmacist if any of your other medicines are LABA medicines, as using too much LABA may cause chest pain, increase in blood pressure, fast and irregular heartbeat, headache, tremor, and nervousness.
Patients taking SYMBICORT should call their health care provider or get emergency medical care:
• if you experience serious allergic reactions including rash, hives, swelling of the face, mouth and tongue, and breathing problems.
• if you think you are exposed to infections such as chicken pox or measles, or if you have any signs of infection. You may have a higher chance of infection.
• if you experience an increase in wheezing right after taking SYMBICORT, eye problems including glaucoma and cataracts, decreases in bone mineral density, swelling of blood vessels (signs include a feeling of pins and needles or numbness of arms or legs, flu-like symptoms, rash, pain and swelling of the sinuses), decrease in blood potassium and increase in blood sugar levels.
If you are switching to SYMBICORT from an oral corticosteroid, follow your health care provider’s instructions to avoid serious health risks when you stop using oral corticosteroids.
Common side effects include nose and throat irritation, headache, upper respiratory tract infection, sore throat, sinusitis, stomach discomfort, flu, back pain, nasal congestion, vomiting, and thrush in the mouth and throat.
Approved Uses for SYMBICORT for Asthma
SYMBICORT is a medicine for the treatment of asthma for people 12 years and older whose doctor has determined that their asthma is not well controlled with a long term asthma control medicine such as an inhaled corticosteroid or whose asthma is severe enough to begin treatment with SYMBICORT. SYMBICORT is not a treatment for sudden asthma symptoms.
Please read Prescribing Information, including Boxed WARNING, with Medication Guide and discuss with your doctor.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.FDA.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
This product information is intended forU.S.customers only.
SYMBICORT is a registered trademark of the AstraZeneca group of companies.
©2012 AstraZeneca. All rights reserved. 2047900 9/12
Asthma Control Test™ copyright, QualityMetric Incorporated 2002, 2004. All rights reserved. Asthma Control Test is a trademark of QualityMetric Incorporated.