Tiotropium is used to control and prevent symptoms (such as wheezing, shortness of breath) caused by ongoing lung disease (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease-COPD which includes bronchitis and emphysema). It works by relaxing the muscles around the airways so that they open up and you can breathe more easily. Tiotropium belongs to a class of drugs known as anticholinergics. Controlling symptoms of breathing problems can decrease time lost from work or school.
This medication must be used regularly to be effective. It does not work immediately and should not be used to relieve sudden breathing problems. If wheezing or sudden shortness of breath occurs, use your quick-relief inhaler (such as albuterol, also called salbutamol in some countries) as prescribed.
How To Use
Read the Patient Information Leaflet and instruction sheet if available from your pharmacist before you start using tiotropium and each time you get a refill. Learn how to use this inhaler properly. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Do not swallow these capsules by mouth. Use the special inhaler to inhale the powder in the capsules. Inhale this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually once daily. Inhale 2 times per capsule to make sure you inhale all of the drug. Do not breathe out into the mouthpiece at any time. Avoid getting this medication into your eyes. It may cause eye pain/irritation, temporary blurred vision, and other vision changes.
Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. This medication works best if used at evenly spaced intervals. To help you remember, use it at the same time each day. Do not increase your dose, use this medication more frequently, or stop using it without first consulting your doctor.
Rinse your mouth after using the inhaler to prevent dry mouth and throat irritation.
Clean the inhaler at least once a month with water. Allow to air-dry fully before using again.
Learn which of your inhalers you should use every day and which you should use if your breathing suddenly worsens. Ask your doctor ahead of time what to do if you have worsening cough or shortness of breath, wheezing, increased sputum, worsening peak flow meter readings, increased use of your quick-relief inhaler, or if your quick-relief inhaler does not seem to be working well. Learn when you can self-medicate and when you should get medical help right away.
Tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they worsen.