A nebuliser is a machine used to change liquid medication into a vapour that you can inhale. It works by pumping pressurised air through the liquid to form a fine mist, which can then be breathed in through a mask or mouthpiece.
A nebuliser is no longer the recommended way for most people to take their asthma medications.
All the latest research shows that a puffer with spacer works just as well as a nebuliser for treating asthma symptoms, including during an asthma flare-up.
A puffer with spacer is also easier, faster and cheaper, is much more portable, and reduces the potential for side-effects.
If you still use a nebuliser for taking asthma medications – whether day-to-day or just when symptoms flare up – talk to your doctor about making the switch.
It is important to choose a nebuliser that suits your needs. Ask your pharmacist, nurse or asthma educator about which nebuliser might be best for you.
Key things to consider are:
Your pharmacist, nurse or asthma educator will be able to help you learn how to use your nebuliser.
Cleaning and maintaining your nebuliser well helps you get the right dose of medication each time and reduces your risk of getting an infection from the nebuliser.
Speak to your pharmacist about the best way to maintain and service your nebuliser. Make sure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Most nebulisers will need the pump serviced and filters replaced regularly, usually every 6–12 months depending on the amount of use. Plus the bowl, tubing and mask/mouthpiece usually need to be replaced every 3 months.
Cochrane Systematic Review: Holding chambers (spacers) versus nebulisers for beta-agonist treatment of acute asthma
It is important to note that information contained in this brochure is not intended to replace professional medical advice. Any questions regarding a medical diagnosis or treatment should be directed to a medical practitioner.