Hoarseness when using inhaler - any advice please

Writing on behalf of my mum whose 74yrs and only this year newly diagnosed with asthma following a bout of pneumonia. She has been prescribed Seretide 125 inhaler (evohaler) and uses a large volumatic spacer (2 puffs twice a day) but finds her voice is very hoarse. She gargles/ rinses her mouth with water between each puff but it doesn't seem to improve things. Has also taken some medically prescribed lozenges to help with fungal mouth thrush but they didn't seem to make much difference. She did come off the inhaler for a short while and the hoarseness stopped so it's definitely connected to using it. Not sure if she's doing something wrong in her technique of using the inhaler/ spacer. One pharmacist said perhaps she should just do the 2 puffs into the inhaler at the same time and breathe in once deeply then 5 short breaths in & out as the taking it in and out of mouth between separate puffs could be causing some medication build up within the spacer but I keep reading conflicting things. If anyone could provide some advise on ways to tackle hoarseness other than what I've mentioned we'd be v grateful, she's a great talker and it's a real shame that her voice is so effected by using the inhaler. Thank you.

4 Replies

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  • the use of a spacer usually does solve the problem, but you can use them in two ways.

    This link will tell you how to use the spacer properly, tinyurl.com/ykhwxh5

    It's not wise to put both puffs into the spacer in one go, nothing wrong, but you stand a better chance of getting more medication evenly distributed throughout the lungs if you do the puffs separate.

    The other method is basically the same as above, but you do five smaller breaths for each puff, if your mother finds it hard to do the deep breath.

    Sorry can't offer more help, but the spacers and anti-septic lozenges have worked for me. I would ask though, does she have central heating on a lot or an open fire, just wondering if the air is too dry, and causing the irritation, I know it does me, and have a humidifier to put the moisture back in the air, but do watch that, as some find the increase in humidity makes their asthma worse.

  • Thanks v much for your helpful response. Could I just ask what type of lozenges do you use? My mum got some on prescription but are there any effective over the counter ones you know of? They have no central heating in their home at present as the boiler is broken so the air shouldn't be too dry.

  • I just use 'Tesco' own brand antiseptic lozenges, usually 1 after taking my inhalers, and then a couple more during the day. I had a real problem with sore throats last year, which was my first winter with asthma, and the spacer and the lozenges seem to do the trick.

    I hope your mum can find something that works. While the MDI and spacer is the most effective method for drug delivery, a dry powder alternative exists (Seretide Accuhaler), and may help with the sore throat.

    Hope this is of help

    Chris

  • I just use 'Tesco' own brand antiseptic lozenges, usually 1 after taking my inhalers, and then a couple more during the day. I had a real problem with sore throats last year, which was my first winter with asthma, and the spacer and the lozenges seem to do the trick.

    I hope your mum can find something that works. While the MDI and spacer is the most effective method for drug delivery, a dry powder alternative exists (Seretide Accuhaler), and may help with the sore throat.

    Hope this is of help

    Chris

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