Compare albuterol vs. Spiriva Respimat

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.


ProAir HFA (albuterol)

Prescription only
Makes it easier to breathe.

ProAir HFA (albuterol) acts quickly to stop asthma attacks and help you breathe easier. However, it is not used for long-term treatment and prevention of asthma since its effects don't last long.

3.9/ 5 average rating with 535 reviewsforalbuterol
Helps you breathe easier.

Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) works well to reduce breathing problems and open your airways, but it can't help you if you're having sudden wheezing or breathing problems.

  • Works quickly to relieve symptoms of asthma.
  • Helps prevent asthma attacks caused by exercise.
  • The metered-dose inhaler is small enough to carry around making it convenient to use when needed.
  • ProAir HFA (albuterol) is also available in the form of tablets and liquid.
  • The inhaler is safe to be used in children age 4 or older.
  • Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) is a good choice to help you breathe easier and lessen the need for a fast-acting (rescue) inhaler.
  • If you're using Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) for asthma, your asthma can get better if you use Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) consistently every day.
  • Reduces flare-ups and hospitalizations with fewer side effects compared to some other medicines that open airways.
  • Used once daily.
  • Compared to Spiriva, Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) allows more medicine to enter your lungs and doesn't require as much force to inhale.
  • ProAir HFA (albuterol) is only used for quick relief of asthma attacks and not for long-term treatment.
  • No generic form of the inhaler is available so it can be expensive for those without insurance.
  • Can cause your heart to beat faster, which is an uncomfortable side effect. Might not be a good option for those with heart problems since the medicine can raise your blood pressure and heart rate.
  • Mouthpiece of the inhaler should be cleaned at least once a week so that it can continue to work properly.
  • Children might find the inhaler difficult to use.
  • Using Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) only slows the progression of your condition, Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) won't cure you.
  • You'll need to use this medicine consistently every day to gain the most benefit.
  • Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) can worsen your symptoms of an enlarged prostate or urinary blockage.
  • Spiriva Respimat (tiotropium) can worsen a certain type of glaucoma.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Extended-release pill
  • Liquid
  • Inhaler
  • Nebulizer solution
  • Inhaler
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No pricing information available
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535 reviews so far
saidit'sworth it
saiditworked well
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Side effects
9possible side effects
  • Tremor
  • Headache
  • Nervousness
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Increased heart rate
  • Muscle cramps
  • Abnormal heartbeat
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Dizziness
See more detailed side effects
4possible side effects
  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Sinus infection
  • Bronchitis
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Worsening of asthma attack
    • Using a new canister of ProAir HFA (albuterol) for the first time
  • Frequent use of ProAir HFA (albuterol)
  • Effects on heart
    • Using ProAir HFA (albuterol) at more than the recommended doses
    • People with heart problems and/or an overactive thyroid
  • Life-threatening effects
    • Using ProAir HFA (albuterol) at more than the recommended doses
  • Severe allergic reaction
  • Lowered potassium levels in blood
    • Taking medications that lower potassium such as certain diuretics
    • History of low potassium levels
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Not for breathing emergenices
  • Sudden difficulty breathing
  • Worsening glaucoma
    • History of narrow-angle glaucoma
  • Difficulty urinating
    • History of urinary bladder blockage (urinary obstruction)
    • History of enlarged prostate
  • Kidney problems
    • History of moderate to severe kidney disease
See more detailed risks and warnings