Asthma is a common lung condition that causes occasional breathing difficulties.
It affects people of all ages and often starts in childhood, although it can also develop for the first time in adults.
There’s currently no cure, but there are simple treatments that can help keep the symptoms under control so it doesn’t have a big impact on your life.
The main symptoms of asthma are:
wheezing (a whistling sound when breathing)
a tight chest, which may feel like a band is tightening around it
The symptoms can sometimes get temporarily worse. This is known as an asthma attack.
Several conditions can cause similar symptoms, so it’s important to get a proper diagnosis and correct treatment.
Your GP will usually be able to diagnose asthma by asking about symptoms and carrying out some simple tests.
Asthma self-assessment tool
Asthma is usually treated by using an inhaler, a small device that lets you breathe in medicines.
The main types are:
reliever inhalers – used when needed to quickly relieve asthma symptoms for a short time
preventer inhalers – used every day to prevent asthma symptoms occurring
Some people also need to take tablets.
Causes and triggers
Asthma is caused by swelling (inflammation) of the breathing tubes that carry air in and out of the lungs. This makes the tubes highly sensitive, so they temporarily narrow.
It may occur randomly or after exposure to a trigger. Common asthma triggers include:
allergies – to house dust mites, animal fur or pollen, for example
smoke, pollution and cold air
infections like colds or flu
Identifying and avoiding your asthma triggers can help you keep your symptoms under control.
Although asthma can normally be kept under control, it’s still a serious condition that can cause a number of problems.
This is why it’s so important to follow your treatment plan and not ignore your symptoms if they’re getting worse.
Badly controlled asthma can cause problems such as:
feeling tired all the time
underperformance at or absence from work or school
stress, anxiety or depression
disruption of your work and leisure because of unplanned visits to your GP or hospital
lung infections (pneumonia)
delays in growth or puberty in children
There’s also a risk of severe asthma attacks, which can be life-threatening.
What Bricanyl Turbohaler
Bricanyl Turbohaler is an inhaler containing a drug called terbutaline which belongs to agroup of medicines called ‘beta-agonists’.
These work by relaxing certain muscles and
opening up the airways in the lungs.
Bricanyl Turbohaler is used for asthma and other breathing problems where you have a tight
chest and difficulty breathing.
Bricanyl is a short-term prevention medication against the symptoms of asthma. It alleviates symptoms like wheezing and short of breath. Its main objective it to relax and dilate the air passage ways to allow air to flow freely. It also alleviates the effects of other respiratory conditions like emphysema and bronchitis.
How to use Bricanyl Turbohaler
Always use this medicine exactly as your doctor or pharmacist has told you. Check with your
doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure. If Bricanyl Turbohaler is to be used by a child, make
sure that they use it correctly.
How to take
How much to take
• The recommended dose is one inhalation as required.
• Do not take more than four inhalations in any 24 hour period.
• One inhalation from your Bricanyl Turbohaler should last for up to six hours.
Talk to your doctor straight away if:
• Your breathing is getting worse.
• You often wake at night with asthma.
• start getting a tight chest.
• are not getting relief from your current dose.
These are signs that your asthma is not being controlled. You may need a different or
additional treatment straight away.
How to store Bricanyl Turbohaler
• Keep this medicine out of the sight and reach of children.
• Do not store above 30°C.
• When not in use, Bricanyl Turbohaler should be stored with the cover tightened.
• Do not use this medicine after the expiry date which is stated on the carton and on the
inhaler after EXP. The expiry date refers to the last day of that month.
• Do not throw away any medicines via wastewater or household waste. Ask your
pharmacist how to throw away medicines you no longer use. These measures will help
protect the environment.
Like all medicines, this medicine can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.
Important side effects to look out for:
• Allergic reactions. The signs may include a swollen face, skin rash, breathing problems,
low blood pressure (feeling faint) and collapse. It is not known exactly how often this
happens. If this happens to you, stop using Bricanyl Turbohaler and see a doctor
• Sudden wheezing soon after inhaling your dose of Bricanyl Turbohaler. It is not known
exactly how often this happens. If this happens to you, stop using Bricanyl Turbohaler
and see a doctor straight away.
Other possible side effects:
Very Common (may affect more than 1 in 10 people)
• Trembling or shaking.
Common (may affect up to 1 in 10 people)
• Pounding or rapid heart beat (palpitations).
• Cramp or feeling tense.
• Low levels of potassium in your blood which may cause muscle weakness, thirst, or ‘pins
Not known (frequency cannot be estimated from the available data)
• Unusual or irregular heart beats.
• Chest pain (due to heart problems such as angina). Tell your doctor if you develop this
symptom whilst receiving treatment with Bricanyl Turbohaler, but do not stop using this
medicine unless told to.
• Feeling sick (nausea).
• Mouth and throat irritation.
• Changes in sleeping patterns and changes in behaviour, such as feeling agitated, restless
Do not be concerned by this list of side effects. You may not get any of them.
Reporting of side effects
If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor or pharmacist. This includes any possible side
effects not listed in this leaflet. You can also report side effects directly via the Yellow Card
Scheme at: www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard. By reporting side effects you can help provide
more information on the safety of this medicine.