What's the difference between inhaler... - Asthma UK communi...

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What's the difference between inhalers - symbicort, seretide and duoresp??


Hi, i'm a newbie! there is so much experience here, I was hoping I could get some help...

I have recently been diagnosed with asthma and my dr has said he's going to need to put me on some medications. he has mentioned duo resp because of the device, but I have been trying to find out for myself what is the difference between them all. And I love the idea of a dose counter on the duoresp - sounds useful? do they all have them?

any help or insight from experienced people would be great as I'm a bit nervous and want to do my own research! thank you, thank you!!

6 Replies

Hi, I don't know myself but have you tried the helpline at Asthma UK? They have nurses on the helpline and they have really helped me a lot recently.

in reply to Hidden

thank you! just keen on personal experience as well. i'll definitely contact them though



Hi all those inhalers you mentioned are preventers. You would take them to open up your airways and they would be used twice a day as each dose lasts 12 hours. You should also be given a blue ventolin inhaler which is a reliever inhaler to be used as and when you feel extra breathless.

Duoresp is a cheaper generic version of symbicort. Some people find it just as good but I didn't. Because of the costs doctors want symbicort users to change to this one, and I presume for new patients this would be tried first. It suits some people but I didn't get on with it and was changed back to symbicort. I hope this is helpful x

Hi and welcome to the forums.

As mentioned in another reply the medications you have listed are all prevention medications. Asthmatics generally have two types of medication (unless you are on the Symbicort SMART Regime) a preventer and a rescue inhaler.

The preventer is used everyday to deliver medication including steroid into the lungs to help keep them open. The rescue inhaler is used in acute flare up situations to deliver quick relief to ease the passageways in the lungs.

The difference between to the three you mentioned is the active ingredients but they all do the same job - keep the lungs open over a sustained period of time. The difference with usage is that Seretide and Duoresp are usually take morning and evening and then you use the resuce (blue) inhaler if you have issues during the day. If you use Symbicort and are on the SMART Regime you use the same inhaler as a preventer and a rescue, but the doctor should have explained this if you are on it.

There are different inhalers because respond to the medications differently due to body chemistry etc, but there basic function is the same.

As for the dose counter on the side. If you have the Seretide Accuhaler then there is a counter but I don't think there is with the evohaler. Symbicort and duoresp both have dose counters.

I've been on Seretide and Symbicort and have found the Symbicort has given me a few more side effects but they are lessening with time, but apart from that I have found them both to be effective.

Hope this helps.

I've read that the duoresp isn't as good for some people but it's supposed to have a better device to deliver medicine? i'm not sure that it is the case ... has anyone tried the different devices and have an opinion on whether this is true?

in reply to beliss

I have taken both, I asked for years to come off Symbicort, and finally they changed me over. I prefer Duoresp as you can taste the powder so I know I have taken the dose. There were many times when my asthma got bad on Symbicort and I took it back and changed it for a different one because I felt like it wasn't working. I was not sure if it was actually the inhaler or not but because you cannot taste anything it is very hard for you to tell whether it is working or not when you are ill. But that could just be me !!

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