Generic Name: CROMOLYN SODIUM ORAL INHALATION
Pronunciation: (kroe' moe lin)
Trade Name(s): Intal
Why it is prescribed: Cromolyn sodium is used to prevent the breathing difficulty i.e., bronchospasm of asthma attacks due to exercise, allergies, and other factors.
When it is to be taken: Cromolyn sodium must be taken on a regular schedule (usually three or four times a day) to prevent asthma attacks or allergy symptoms. It is not used after an asthma attack has started. It is most effective when used before exposure to substances that cause allergies (e.g., pollen). If you have seasonal allergies, use cromolyn sodium until the season is over. To prevent breathing difficulty, use cromolyn sodium less than one hour before exercising or exposure to a substance known to cause bronchospasm. Follow the instructions on your prescription label carefully. Allergy symptoms and asthma usually improve within two to four weeks, although improvement in asthma may not occur for six to eight weeks. When used before exercise, cromolyn sodium prevents breathing difficulty for up to four hours.
How it should be taken: Cromolyn sodium inhalation comes as a powder in capsules, an aerosol, and a liquid for use in a special inhaler. Do not swallow the capsules. Do not remove a capsules from its foil until you are ready to use it, and handle it as little as possible. Moisture from your hands will soften it. Before you take cromolyn sodium, read the written instructions that come with it. Ask your doctor to demonstrate the proper technique, and practice using your inhalation device while in his or her presence. If you have difficulty in getting the medication into your lungs, a spacer may help. If you are using other inhalations as well as cromolyn sodium for asthma, ask your doctor which to use first.
1. Inhalation devices require regular cleaning and may need to be replaced periodically.
2. Follow the instructions that come with your device.
3. Do not use more or less of the medication than as prescribed by your doctor.
4. If your symptoms have not improved after four weeks, notify your doctor.
5. If you forget to take a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. Take any remaining doses for that day at evenly spaced intervals. Do not take a double dose.
1. Irritation of the throat and air passages, bad taste, cough. Rinse your mouth and gargle after each dose. Be sure that you use the inhaler correctly. If these side effects continue, contact your doctor.
2. Increased difficulty breathing, wheezing, sneezing, and stuffy nose. Contact your doctor if these effects are severe or persist.
3. Lightheadedness. Remove the mouthpiece or mask and pause for a while.
1. Before using cromolyn sodium powder in capsules for inhalation, tell your doctor if you have a lactase deficiency.
2. Before using this medication, tell your doctor if you have a history of heart disease.
3. Women who are pregnant or breast-feeding should inform their doctors.
4. Do not use cromolyn sodium after an asthma attack has started; it can make breathing more difficult.
5. Do not allow anyone else to use this medication.
Storage Conditions: Keep cromolyn sodiun out of the reach of children. Store it at room temperature. Protect it from heat, light, and moisture.