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ciclesonide (inhalation)

Pronunciation: sye KLES oh nide

Brand: Alvesco HFA

What is the most important information I should know about ciclesonide?

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Do not use ciclesonide inhalation to treat an asthma attack that has already begun. It will not work fast enough. Use only a fast-acting inhalation medicine to treat an asthma attack. Talk with your doctor if any of your asthma medications do not seem to work as well in treating or preventing asthma attacks.

Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it easier for you to get an infection. Steroids can also worsen an infection you already have, or reactivate an infection you recently had. Before taking this medication, tell your doctor about any illness or infection you have had within the past several weeks.

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You should not use this medication if you are allergic to ciclesonide.

Before using ciclesonide, tell your doctor if you have tuberculosis, an infection of your mouth or throat (such as oral thrush), glaucoma or history of cataracts, herpes infection of your eyes, or a personal or family history of osteoporosis.

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If you also use a steroid medication, do not stop using the steroid suddenly or you may have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Talk with your doctor about using less and less of the steroid before stopping completely.

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Call your doctor right away if you feel that ciclesonide inhalation makes your condition worse.

Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Call your doctor for preventive treatment if you are exposed to chicken pox or measles. These conditions can be serious or even fatal in people who are using steroid medication.

What is ciclesonide?

Ciclesonide is a corticosteroid. It prevents the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation.

Ciclesonide is used to prevent asthma attacks in adults and children 12 years and older.

Ciclesonide may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my health care provider before using ciclesonide?

Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it easier for you to get an infection. Steroids can also worsen an infection you already have, or reactivate an infection you recently had. Before taking this medication, tell your doctor about any illness or infection you have had within the past several weeks.

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You should not use this medication if you are allergic to ciclesonide.

If you have certain conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely use this medication. Before using ciclesonide, tell your doctor if you have:

  • tuberculosis;
  • an infection of your mouth or throat (such as oral thrush);
  • glaucoma or history of cataracts;
  • herpes infection of your eyes; or
  • a personal or family history of osteoporosis.
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FDA pregnancy category C. This ciclesonide inhalation may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

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It is not known whether ciclesonide inhalation passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Long-term use of steroid medication can slow a child's growth. Tell your doctor if the child using this medication is not growing or gaining weight properly.

How should I use ciclesonide inhalation?

Use this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not use the medication in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the instructions on your prescription label.

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Do not use ciclesonide inhalation to treat an asthma attack that has already begun. It will not work fast enough. Use only a fast-acting inhalation medicine to treat an asthma attack. Talk with your doctor if any of your asthma medications do not seem to work as well in treating or preventing asthma attacks.

Ciclesonide inhalation comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use, and directions for priming the inhaler device. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Ciclesonide inhalation is most often used once daily, in the morning or evening. Follow your doctor's instructions. Rinse your mouth after inhaling this medication.

The inhaler device must be primed before your first use or any time you have not used the inhaler for 10 days or longer. For instructions on how to prime the inhaler, refer to the patient instructions provided with your medication.

Your dosage needs may change if you have surgery, are ill, are under stress, or have recently had an asthma attack. Do not change your doses or medication schedule without advice from your doctor.

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If you also use a steroid medication, do not stop using the steroid suddenly or you may have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Talk with your doctor about using less and less of the steroid before stopping completely.

It may take up to 4 weeks of using ciclesonide inhalation before your symptoms improve. For best results, keep using the medication as directed. Talk with your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 4 weeks of treatment.

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Call your doctor right away if you feel that ciclesonide inhalation makes your condition worse.

Asthma is usually treated with a combination of different drugs. To best treat your condition, use all of your medications as directed by your doctor. Be sure to read the medication guide or patient instructions provided with each of your medications.

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Store this medication at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the medicine canister away from open flame or high heat, such as in a car on a hot day. The canister may explode if it gets too hot.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the medication as soon as you remember the missed dose. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and use the medicine at your next regularly scheduled time. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

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Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

An overdose of ciclesonide inhalation is not expected to produce life-threatening symptoms. However, long-term use of high steroid doses can lead to symptoms such as thinning skin, easy bruising, changes in the shape or location of body fat (especially in your face, neck, back, and waist), increased acne or facial hair, menstrual problems, impotence, or loss of interest in sex.

What should I avoid while using ciclesonide inhalation?

Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Call your doctor for preventive treatment if you are exposed to chicken pox or measles. These conditions can be serious or even fatal in people who are using steroid medication.

What are the possible side effects of ciclesonide inhalation?

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Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

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Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • wheezing, choking, or other breathing problems after using this medication;
  • sores or white patches in your mouth or throat;
  • vision problems, such as tunnel vision or blurred vision; or
  • worsening asthma symptoms.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • unpleasant taste in your mouth;
  • dry mouth, burning or irritation in your mouth;
  • white patches or sores inside your mouth;
  • runny or stuffy nose, sore throat;
  • hoarse voice;
  • mild itching or skin rash;
  • joint pain, back pain; or
  • headache.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect ciclesonide inhalation?

Tell your doctor about all other medications you use, especially:

  • conivaptan (Vaprisol);
  • an antibiotic such as clarithromycin (Biaxin), erythromycin (E.E.S., EryPed, Ery-Tab, Erythrocin), or telithromycin (Ketek);
  • an antifungal medication such as clotrimazole (Mycelex Troche), itraconazole (Sporanox), ketoconazole (Nizoral), or voriconazole (Vfend);
  • HIV/AIDS medicine such as atazanavir (Reyataz), delavirdine (Rescriptor), indinavir (Crixivan), nelfinavir (Viracept), saquinavir (Invirase, Fortovase), or ritonavir (Norvir); or
  • an antidepressant such as nefazodone, paroxetine (Paxil), or sertraline (Zoloft).

There may be other drugs that can interact with ciclesonide inhalation. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about ciclesonide inhalation.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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