Cromolyn is a medicine used to prevent asthma symptoms. You take this medicine every day, even when you are not having symptoms. This medicine is called a controller medicine because when itâ€™s taken regularly every day, it helps to control symptoms.
Cromolyn does not give quick relief of wheezing in acute asthma attacks. For acute attacks, you need a different type of medicine called a reliever.
Asthma symptoms are caused by 2 different problems in the airways.
One problem is that the muscles in the airways tighten up, which causes the feeling of chest tightness and wheezing.
The other problem is swelling, irritation, and too much mucus in the airways.
Asthma symptoms often start after exposure to a trigger. Asthma triggers can include pollen, animals, mold, colds, exercise, cold air, and air pollutants. Itâ€™s important to know what things trigger your asthma symptoms so that you can try to avoid those things or take your reliever medicine before being around a trigger. You should keep reliever medicine with you at all times in case you have an asthma attack.
How does it work?
When you are exposed to something that triggers your asthma symptoms, it causes swelling and irritation in the airways. Cromolyn helps to prevent asthma symptoms by blocking this allergic response to triggers. When you have less swelling, you will have fewer symptoms and be able to breathe better.
Cromolyn is commonly given with a nebulizer. A nebulizer is a machine that you can use at home. Medicine is mixed with liquid and the machine forms a mist. You breathe in the mist to help get the medicine into your lungs.
What else do I need to know about this medicine?
Follow the directions that come with your medicine, including information about food or alcohol. Make sure you know how and when to take your medicine. Do not take more or less than you are supposed to take.
Try to get all of your prescriptions filled at the same place. Your pharmacist can help make sure that all of your medicines are safe to take together.
Keep a list of your medicines with you. List all of the prescription medicines, nonprescription medicines, supplements, natural remedies, and vitamins that you take. Tell all healthcare providers who treat you about all of the products you are taking.
Many medicines have side effects. A side effect is a symptom or problem that is caused by the medicine. Ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist what side effects the medicine may cause and what you should do if you have side effects.
If you have any questions, ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist for more information. Be sure to keep all appointments for provider visits or tests.
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Adult Advisor 2015.1 published by RelayHealth. Last modified: 2012-01-25 Last reviewed: 2013-12-26
This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.
UpToDate â€“ â€œTreatment of intermittent and mild persistent asthma in adolescents and adultsâ€ Accessed 11/30/2012
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