levalbuterol (generic name)

Xopenex (brand name)

It helps open up the airways in your lungs to make it easier to breathe
(lev al BYOO ter ol)
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What is this medicine?

LEVALBUTEROL (lev al BYOO ter ol) is a bronchodilator. It helps open up the airways in your lungs to make it easier to breathe. This medicine is used to treat and to prevent bronchospasm.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of the following conditions:
  • diabetes
  • heart disease or irregular heartbeat
  • high blood pressure
  • kidney disease
  • pheochromocytoma
  • seizures
  • thyroid disease
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to albuterol, levalbuterol, sulfites, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

This medicine is for inhalation through the mouth. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Do not use more often than directed. Make sure that you are using your inhaler correctly. Ask you doctor or health care provider if you have any questions.

Use this medicine before you use any other inhaler. Wait 5 minutes or more before between using different inhalers.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, use only that dose. Do not use double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • anti-infectives like chloroquine and pentamidine
  • caffeine
  • cisapride
  • diuretics
  • medicines for colds
  • medicines for depression or for emotional or psychotic conditions
  • medicines for weight loss including some herbal products
  • methadone
  • some antibiotics like clarithromycin, erythromycin, levofloxacin, and linezolid
  • some heart medicines
  • steroid hormones like dexamethasone, cortisone, hydrocortisone
  • theophylline
  • thyroid hormones

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Tell your doctor or health care professional if your symptoms do not improve. If your asthma or bronchitis gets worse while you are using this medicine, call your doctor right away.

If mouth gets dry try chewing sugarless gum or sucking hard candy. Drink water as directed.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • difficulty breathing or wheezing that increases or does not go away
  • dizziness or fainting spell
  • high blood pressure
  • fever
  • muscle cramps or weakness
  • numbness in fingers or toes
  • vomiting

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • constipation
  • cough
  • difficulty sleeping
  • headache
  • nervousness or trembling
  • stuffy or runny nose
  • throat irritation
  • unusual taste
  • upset stomach

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store canister upright with the mouthpiece down. Store at room temperature (68 to 77 degrees F). The contents are under pressure and may burst when exposed to heat or flame. Do not freeze. This medicine does not work as well if it is too cold. Throw away the canister after 200 sprays or after the expiration date.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Last Updated: December 14, 2009
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