ABCs of HFAs: Understanding Your Quick-Relief Asthma Inhaler
Asthma patients have used albuterol metered-dose inhalers (MDIs) for more than 25 years. Also called "quick-relief" or "rescue" inhalers, these have traditionally used chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) to "propel" albuterol into the lungs.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has now mandated that these CFC-based quick-relief inhalers be removed from the market by 2009. Patients currently using CFC inhalers will need to transition prior to the ban date to environmentally-friendly hydrofluoroalkane-based (HFA) quick-relief inhalers.