Inhaler devices and technique
The three main types of inhaler devices for asthma and COPD medicines are:
- manually-actuated pressurised metered-dose inhalers (conventional puffer)
- breath-actuated pressurised metered-dose inhalers
- dry powder inhalers (multi-dose and capsule types)
- mist inhalers.
The correct inhaler technique depends on the device. Poor inhaler technique is extremely common and is associated with worse outcomes in asthma and COPD, including poor asthma symptom control and overuse of relievers and preventers.
Regardless of the type of inhaler device prescribed, all patients need training in correct inhaler technique, including a physical demonstration. As inhaler technique worsens over time, all patients need regular checking to ensure they are using their inhalers correctly.
Table. Types of inhaler devices for delivering asthma and COPD medicines Please view and print this figure separately: https://www.asthmahandbook.org.au/table/show/75
In this section
Choosing an inhaler device to suit the individual
Training patients in inhaler technique
Considerations when using inhaled reliever or preventer medicines
Use and care of spacers