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Inhalers with and without counters

Yes, I do have far too much time on my hands

When I finished my Seretide the other day I sprayed it into thw air just to see how much was left, and it was about 30 puffs! I know they say to stop at 000 so youre sure of getting full dose. Does this mean we don't get full doses of non-counter inhalers (salbutamol, other steroids etc)? or is it more that Seretide has a huge amount of unnecessary wastage? Any thoughts?

6 Replies

30 puffs? Wow. Have no idea, but I'd like to know myself.

Maybe it is whatever extras are added to help transport the seretide into your lungs rather than the seretide itself - i.e. you get a puff, but the active ingredient isn't concentrated enough?

Or maybe in inhalers without counters they put in extra doses as a safety margin in case people lose count of how many puffs they've taken? That would be reassuring if they do. I keep a log book of my non-counter puffer usage so I don't get caught out with a sabutamol inhaler I think still has doses but doesn't. Even with that I sometimes loose count because if I use the puffer while I'm out and about I have to remember the count or write it down and then remember to record it in the log book.


Haha, you just made me go get the seretide inhaler I finished the other day. I got 42 puffs out of mine. I never thought it'd be that much. It does seem like a bit of a waste, but I guess after 000 it might not be guaranteed that it's a full dose of both drugs. I have on a few occasions used a few extra puffs past 000 when I've not picked up prescriptions early enough, but I'm guessing that I'd get a full or close to full dose for a few puffs at least.

I tend to give up on my ventolin inhalers when there's about 20/30 puffs left (that's how much I've squirted out after) as I don't want to be carrying an inhaler that has so little ventolin for an emergency. I also find that they don't seem to be as effective at the end, maybe it's already given 200 puffs and the remaining 20/30 puffs is extra, like seretide, and maybe doesn't give a full dose. I've never counted how many puffs are actually in a ventolin, but would be intrigued to know.


When Im unsure how much salbutamol is left that puffer becomes my by the bed one and I take a new one out with me. And yes, Ive used Seretide a little past 000 in emergencies too. It bothers me a bit because I know Seretide is an expensive medication and even though Im on thousands of pounds worth of drugs each month, I do feel guilty at the waste.


Wow, that's a crazy amount of waste! I must admit that I'm a bit of a pain for using my fostair right upto the last squirt. I'm on the mart version of it and it's because I'm lazy. I keep 1 inhaler in the bathroom cabinet for my morning and evening dose (use it before brushing my teeth) and one in my bag for if it's needed in the day or when I'm out. Then at least 1 unopened one in the fridge. I don't chart how much I've used, so my bathroom one tends to go right down before it's replaced, mostly because I don't think about it until I see it next to my toothbrush!! It's made me wonder if I'm getting the full ics dose?

Salbutamol is a bit different - I cleared out one of my bags yesterday and found 5 open blue inhalers in there, all with what doesn't seem to be that much in it. Thing is though I like to have one that say least half full in my pocket ( usually an atrovent too) for incase I'm out or at work and really start struggling. Often at work it's necessary to use swiftish!!


Hello! New to this forum though I have been reading through it for a while.

About the extra puffs at the end of inhalers.. From what I was told, those extra puffs may hold little to no medicine.. Usually it's just the propellant that is coming out at the end, so basically useless. So better to dispose when you know it's at the end of the recommended doses.


Allycat is right - they should not be used beyond the stated number of actuations because there will not be the correct dose of medication in the puffs dispensed - it is the remaining propellant.


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