Spacer for MDI Therapy

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What is a spacer? … 

  • A spacer slows down the medicine delivered from a metered-dose inhaler.
  • This way the medicine stays in the spacer and patient can breathe it into his/her lungs.
  • Without a spacer, the medicine sprays directly into your mouth and throat, and less of it reaches the lungs.
  • A spacer is also called an aerosol-holding chamber.

What is a metered-dose inhaler? …

  • Many asthma medicines are given using a metered-dose inhaler (MDI).
  • An MDI is made up of a metal canister inserted into a plastic holder.
  • The metal canister contains the asthma medicine.
  • When the canister is pushed down, it sprays a puff of medicine out.
  • An MDI should be used with a spacer in order to get the dose of medicine into the lungs.

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r-16  Roth, R. Content specialist for the project, Asthma and Your Child, Krames #11480. Images approved by R. Roth, Feb 12, 2004.