Cromolyn belongs to a class of medications called mast cell stabilizers. Cromolyn is used to prevent the symptoms of asthma. When it is used regularly, cromolyn lessens the number and severity of asthma attacks by reducing inflammation in the lungs. Cromolyn is also used just before exposure to conditions or substances (for example, exercise, allergens, such as pollen, aspirin, chemicals, cold air, or air pollutants)that cause bronchospasm (wheezing or difficulty in breathing).Cromolyn will not help an asthma or bronchospasm attack that has already started. Cromolyn may be used alone or with other asthma medicines, such as bronchodilators (medicines that open up narrowed breathing passages) or corticosteroids (cortisone-like medicines). This medication is used in people with a food allergy to prevent serious reactions to foods. It is also used to treat and prevent inflammatory bowel diseases (e.g., ulcerative colitis). It works by preventing mast cells (cells involved with allergic/inflammatory reactions) from releasing substances (e.g., histamines) that can cause skin and gut problems.
How to use cromolyn
- Take this medication by mouth 15 to 20 minutes before meals, usually 4 times daily or as directed by the doctor.
- Swallow the capsule whole. If one is taking this medication for food allergy, or if one has trouble swallowing capsules, it is recommended that one takes this medication as a solution. Open the capsule and dissolve the contents into a small amount of hot water. Add cold water, mix, and drink all of the mixture. Do not mix with any other liquid or food.
- Do not prepare the solution in advance.
- Dosage is based on medical condition , age, and response to treatment. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it.
- Do not suddenly stop taking this medication without consulting the doctor. Condition may become worse when the drug is suddenly stopped. The dose may need to be gradually decreased. Tell the doctor if condition persists or worsens.
Cromolyn inhalation works by acting on certain inflammatory cells in the lungs to prevent them from releasing substances that cause asthma symptoms or bronchospasm. This medicine is available only with doctor’s prescription. This product is available in the following dosage forms: Solution, Capsule, Aerosol Liquid and Aerosol Powder.
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. For this medicine, the following should be considered: Allergies, Pediatric, and Geriatric. Cromolyn oral inhalation is used to help prevent symptoms of asthma or bronchospasm (wheezing or difficulty in breathing). Cromolyn will not relieve an asthma or a bronchospasm attack that has already started. It is important to use cromolyn at regular times as directed by the doctor. Cromolyn inhalation usually comes with patient directions. Read them carefully before using this medicine. If one does not understand the directions that come with the inhaler or if one is not sure how to use the inhaler, ask health care professional to show how to use it. Also, ask the health care professional to check regularly how the inhaler is being used to make sure one is using it properly.
For patients using cromolyn inhalation aerosol, the cromolyn aerosol canister provides about 112 or 200 inhalations, depending on the size of the canister the doctor ordered. One should try to keep a record of the number of inhalations one uses so as to know when the canister is almost empty. This canister, unlike some other aerosol canisters, cannot be floated in water to test its fullness. When one uses the inhaler for the first time, or if one has not used it in a while, the inhaler may not deliver the right amount of medicine with the first puff. Therefore, before using the inhaler, test or prime it.
To test or prime the inhaler:
- Insert the medicine container (canister) firmly into the clean mouthpiece according to the manufacturer’s directions. Check to make sure the canister is placed properly into the mouthpiece.
- Take the cap off the mouthpiece and shake the inhaler three or four times.
- Hold the inhaler well away at arm’s length and press the top of the canister, spraying the medicine one time into the air. The inhaler will now be ready to provide the right amount of medicine when used.
To use the inhaler:
- Using the thumb and one or two fingers, hold the inhaler upright, with the mouthpiece end down and pointing towards one.
- Take the cap off the mouthpiece. Check the mouthpiece to make sure it is clear. Do not use the inhaler with any other mouthpieces.
- Gently shake the inhaler three or four times.
- Hold the mouthpiece away from the mouth and breathe out slowly and completely to the end of a normal breath.
- Use the inhalation method recommended by the doctor.
Open-mouth method: Place the mouthpiece about 1 to 2 inches (2 finger widths) in front of widely opened mouth. Make sure the inhaler is aimed into the mouth so the spray does not hit the roof of the mouth or the tongue. Avoid spraying in eyes.
Closed-mouth method: Place the mouthpiece in the mouth between the teeth and over tongue with lips closed tightly around it. Make sure, tongue or teeth are not blocking the opening. Tilt head back a little. Start to breathe in slowly through the mouth. At the same time, press the top of the canister once to get one puff of medicine. Continue to breathe in slowly for 3 to 4 seconds until a full deep breath is taken. It is important to press down on the canister and breathe in slowly at the same time so the medicine gets into the lungs. This step may be difficult at first. Hold breath up to 10 seconds (count slowly to ten). This gives the medicine time to settle into the airways and lungs. Take the mouthpiece away from the mouth and breathe out slowly. Follow doctor’s instructions.
Keep track of the number of sprays the inhaler has been used, and discard the inhaler after the labeled maximum number of sprays has been used.
To clean the inhaler:
- Remove the canister from the inhaler and set the canister aside. Do not get the canister wet.
- Wash the mouthpiece, cap, and the spacer in warm soapy water. Rinse well with warm, running water.
- Shake off the excess water and let the inhaler parts air dry completely before putting the inhaler back together.
Cromolyn sodium is an anti-inflammatory medication. It works by preventing the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation. Cromolyn sodium inhalation is used to prevent asthma attacks in people with bronchial asthma. Cromolyn sodium is also used to prevent bronchospasm (wheezing, chest tightness, trouble breathing) caused by exercise, pollutants in the air, or exposure to certain chemicals.
Cromolyn sodium oral is used to treat the symptoms of a condition called mastocytosis, which can cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, headaches, stomach pain, itchy skin, and flushing (warmth or redness under the skin).
one should not use this medication if allergic to cromolyn sodium. Before using cromolyn sodium inhalation, tell the doctor if there is the presence of:
- heart disease or a heart rhythm disorder;
- coronary artery disease;
- kidney disease; or
- liver disease.
- if pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment
- Do not use this medication without informing the doctor if one is breast-feeding a baby.
- Do not give this medication to a child younger than 2 years old without the advice of a doctor.
Cromolyn Side Effects
Get emergency medical help if one has any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat, severe wheezing or chest tightness just after inhaling the medication; skin rash, bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness; or fever, swollen glands, rash or itching, joint pain, and a general ill feeling; dry or irritated throat, temporary or occasional cough; sneezing, stuffy or itchy nose, watery eyes; burning or bleeding of the nose; nausea, heartburn, stomach pain; urinating more or less than usual; dizziness, drowsiness, headache; or unusual or unpleasant taste in the mouth.
- Avoid spraying the inhaler into the face or getting the medication in the eyes.
- Do not mix cromolyn sodium inhalation with other medicines in a nebulizer.
- Follow the doctor’s instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity while using cromolyn sodium oral.
- Use this medication exactly as prescribed by the doctor. Do not use it in larger amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on the prescription label.
- Do not use cromolyn sodium 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.
- Cromolyn sodium inhalation is given using a nebulizer or with a metered-dose inhaler. One will inhale the medication through a face mask or mouth piece. Do not swallow this medicine.
- To prevent bronchial asthma attacks, cromolyn sodium inhalation is usually given 4 times daily. If one is using cromolyn sodium inhalation to prevent asthma caused by exercise, air pollutants, or exposure to chemicals, use the medicine 10 to 15 minutes (but not more than t hour) before exercising or exposure.