Prescription onlyNo lower cost generic available

Symbicort

(Budesonide / Formoterol)

Prescription onlyNo lower cost generic available
  • Inhaler
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Prevents breathing problems.

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Our bottom line

Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol) is good for people who need two medicines to control their asthma or COPD, but it might be expensive since there's no generic available.

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Upsides

  • 2-in-1 medicine that lowers inflammation and opens airways in your lungs. Medicines are more effective together than alone.
  • Makes lung function significantly better.
  • Lowers the number of flare-ups and rescue inhaler uses in asthma and COPD.
  • In studies, shown to improve asthma symptoms, rescue inhaler use, and lung function on the first day.
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382 reviews

Downsides

  • You have to use Symbicort twice a day, every day to control your symptoms.
  • You can't lower the dose or stop taking it too suddenly.
  • Lower doses are not as effective for COPD.
  • Can make your heart race.
  • Steroids can slow height growth in kids.
  • Because steroids suppress your immune system, you can catch bacterial and viral infections easier, and they can take longer to go away.
  • There have been some reports of worsening asthma leading to death when taking this medicine.

What to expect when you take Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol) for Asthma

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Side effect rates for Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol)

677 From clinical trials of Symbicort / Asthma (80/4.5 mcg)
  • Common cold
  • Ear, nose, or throat infection
  • Headache
  • Throat pain
  • Sinus inflammation
  • Flu
  • Back pain
  • Nasal congestion

Risks and Warnings for Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol)

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    • Higher risk if:
    • Adverse effect of long-acting beta agonist drugs (LABAs), one of the medications in Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol), a combination drug.

    There are reports of worsening asthma leading to death in people taking Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol). It is related to one of the medications in this product. Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol) should only be used if your symptoms have not improved with a fast-acting or controller medication alone. If this happens, call 911 or your doctor right away.

    This is a black box warning. The FDA requires this warning when there is a significant risk of serious or life-threatening effects that anyone taking the drug should consider.

Means that some groups have a high risk of experiencing this side effect

Common concerns from people taking Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol)

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Pregnancy
Kidneys and liver
  • Adrenal suppression can occur if you lower your dose or stop taking Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol) too quickly which is related to one of the medications in the combination. Symptoms include joint or muscle pain, extreme low energy and depression. Changes in your medication need to be done slowly and over time. Talk to your doctor before you decrease or stop Symbicort (Budesonide / Formoterol).
Weight
  • Steroids can slow height growth in kids.