Asthma UK community forum
9,890 members16,647 posts

Spacers - big or little and 10 puffs in one go??

I have a three year old with asthma. He's now very good with spacers, but I'm unsure which is better at delivering the right dose of medication and to the right spot. He doesn't do the deep breathing yet, but breathes normaly for 10 - 20 breaths. The big one - like two large cups put together is cumbersome so I prefer to use the smaller Aerospacer. Is there a better one and how does each one differ? I ask because I read somewhere about one needing to be used with deeper breaths etc. Maybe picking up fag ends .....

Also one GP recently said about using 10 puffs (of the blue) per dose in a spacer as toddlers never get the whole dose. Has anyone else been advised about this? I queried this at the time as I had been told that subsequent puffs if done without the shaking advised meant that you would be getting only the propellant. I was told to do the 10 puffs.

The partners watching MotoGP so I got plenty of time .....

4 Replies

I'm not sure about little kids, so I'm replying from an adult perspective - please check with GP/asthma nurse/asthma advice line rather than following this.

I recently asked on here about the multiple puffs thing - I'll try and find post and bump it up. I was given advise from GP about doing 10 puffs in one through Volumatic (the 'big' spacer by your definition) as a neb alternative during severe attacks. However, all the advice has been against this and that you need to do 10 separate puffs, so I'm still a bit confused.

Also, was reviewing technique with GP recently, she asked me to explain what I normally did, I begun to explain the deep breathing technique as I normally use an Aerochamber ('little' spacer) for my daily meds - this was prescribed by my consultant because I have to take my daily meds through a spacer but my particular steroid inhaler does not fit the Volumatic as it has a round mouth piece. Consultant taught me deep breathing technique to use with this. Anyway, when explaining technique to GP she cut me off and talked about the normal multiple breaths technique (she said 5 breaths) saying that the spacer had a one-way valve. I know the Volumatic (big) does but I'm not sure about the Aerochamber (small). I have since tried this technique with the small spacer but it feels like I can't breath out - at least not with normal breathing, I have to blow hard which defeats the purpose.

So, I've gone back to what I was doing particularly as I'm seeing my consultant fairly soon and I'm going to clarify things then, except that for the multiple puffs where I'm following the advice which seems fairly standard to do ten puffs in a row but with a wait/shake between each.

I hope that hasn't confused things further...



You're the same as me, different bits of advice and different experience. Thanks for the info about the valves though, I hadn't thought about this at all. I'll give the asthma nurse a ring as you advise and try to clarify what suits him. It would be nice if they could arrive at the same procedure for each piece of equipment and for using the inhalers, but patients are different and as patients (and parents of patients) we have to keep questioning.


And thanks fo bumping up previous discussion

Very informative about the propellant issue. So I'm back to I puff, 5 breaths etc. until next checkup



my advise as i have always been told is 1 puff at a time into space 10 breaths per puff shake ventolin again and repeat untill the require amounts of doses required

i personally find the space easier with the kids as i can tell by noise how many breaths they had

o and kids consultant won't let them use the aerochambers


You may also like...