Terbutaline (inhaled) is the active ingredient of Bricanyl turbohaler (Nappi code: 791415-007).
Terbutaline is a bronchodilator. Bronchodilators are drugs that relax the muscles around the airways, helping the airways to open up, making it easier to breathe.
In South Africa terbutaline (inhaled) is registered for the treatment of bronchial asthma, chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
Rinse mouth with water after each inhalation dose to minimise dry mouth.
Do not exceed the recommended dose. If your usual dose does not provide relief or if relief does not last, medical advice should be sought.
How does terbutaline work?
Terbutaline relaxes bronchial smooth muscle by stimulating beta2 receptors. When terbutaline stimulates these receptors, it causes the muscles in the airways to relax, making breathing easier.
Drug schedule: schedule 2
Available as: terbutaline is available as a turbohaler.
What does it do? Terbutaline widens/opens the airways to make breathing easier.
Overdose risk: low
Dependence risk: low
Is terbutaline available as a generic? no
Is terbutaline available on prescription only? no and yes
Onset of effect: within 5 -15 minutes
Duration of action: up to 8 hours
Stopping this medicine: do not stop treatment with this drug without consulting your doctor. The original symptoms may recur.
Consult your doctor before using this drug if:
- you have a thyroid problem
- you have diabetes
- you have a heart disease
- you have high blood pressure
- you have glaucoma
Pregnancy: potentially safe - speak to doctor before use.
Breastfeeding: presumed safe - speak to doctor before use.
Porphyria: avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your condition. Consult your doctor before use.
Infants and children: this medication is not intended for use in children under the age of 2 years.
The elderly: caution is advised in the elderly as side effects are more likely to occur.
Driving and hazardous work: no special precautions need to be taken.
Alcohol: no special precautions need to be taken.
Possible side effects
| Side effect|| Frequency|| || Consult your doctor || |
| || Common||Rare|| Only if severe|| In all cases|
|muscle tremor||x|| ||x|| |
|restlessness||x|| ||x|| |
|nervousness||x|| ||x|| |
|headache||x|| ||x|| |
|breathing difficulties|| ||x|| ||x|
may reduce the effect of terbutaline and worsen broncho-constriction
|monoamine-oxidase-inhibitor antidepressants||a dangerous rise in blood pressure may occur|
|theophylline||blood potassium levels may be lowered|
|corticosteroids||blood potassium levels may be lowered|
A small overdose is no cause for concern. In case of intentional large overdose, seek emergency medical attention.
Adults: use every 4 - 6 hours as directed.
This material is not intended to substitute medical advice, but is for informational purposes only.
Please consult a physician for specific treatment and recommendations.