Ventolin (Evohaler)

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About Ventolin (Evohaler)
  1. What is a Ventolin Inhaler?

    A Ventolin inhaler is used to treat asthma and COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease). Ventolin belongs to a group of medicines known as fast-acting bronchodilators.

    It provides effective short-term relief from the symptoms of asthma. For this reason, it is known as a 'reliever inhaler'.

    You must have a prescription to buy Ventolin inhalers. 

    Read our guide on Ventolin inhalers for more information. 

    What is a Ventolin inhaler used to treat?

    Ventolin is used as a treatment for asthma; it can prevent asthma symptoms from occurring and is a reliable inhaler if you suffer an asthma attack. 

    The active ingredient, salbutamol, is a short-acting beta-2-agonist, which works to relax the muscles in the airways. This helps the airways to expand, allowing air to pass through them more freely.

    Salbutamol inhalers are usually blue in colour so they can be easily identified in the event of an asthma attack. Ventolin is commonly referred to as the "blue inhaler".

    Learn more about Ventolin inhalers for asthma, how they work, and which asthma symptoms they can help with in our guide on the topic.

    Why is Ventolin recommended to treat asthma?

    Salbutamol has been used in the treatment of asthma since 1969. It regularly appears on the World Health Organisation's List of Essential Medicines.

    Clinical studies have shown Ventolin to be an essential treatment for asthma sufferers due to its ability to instantly improve asthma symptoms in the event of an asthma attack.

    Salbutamol inhalers are very fast-acting and work within just 5 minutes, with their therapeutic effects being felt for between 3 to 6 hours.

    How does Ventolin treat asthma?

    Salbutamol is also known as albuterol and is a short-acting beta-2 agonist (SABA). It is typically the first-line medicine for treating asthma symptoms. Salbutamol inhalers are commonly used in conjunction with long-acting beta-agonists (LABAs), most typically corticosteroid inhalers such as Clenil Modulite. 

    Its inhibitory effects relax the muscles in the airways and make it much easier for air to travel in and out of your lungs without resistance, helping you to breathe. Salbutamol also helps to relieve tightness in the chest, wheezing, and coughs.

    Who can use Ventolin?

    Do not use this inhaler if you are allergic to salbutamol sulphate or any of the other ingredients listed in this medicine.

    Can you buy Ventolin inhalers over the counter?

    No, Ventolin inhalers are a prescription-only medicine (POM), meaning they are not for sale over the counter.

    Can you buy Ventolin inhalers online?

    You can buy Ventolin and other salbutamol inhalers online from most UK pharmacies. You will be required to complete an online consultation so that a doctor or medical professional is able to assess your condition and ensure you are receiving the most suitable treatment.

    Ventolin Alternatives

    There are many different alternatives to a Ventolin inhaler, with the majority of reliever inhalers containing salbutamol as the active ingredient. The other commonly prescribed salbutamol inhaler is Salamol

    Other reliever inhalers include:

  2. Ventolin Indications and Dose

    All of our doctors and pharmacists follow NICE guidelines when prescribing Ventolin. Always use the Ventolin inhaler exactly as instructed by your doctor or pharmacist.

    How to use a Ventolin Inhaler

    Before using your Ventolin inhaler, try to breathe as slowly as possible.

    1. Stand up or sit up straight when you use your inhaler.
    2. Remove the mouthpiece cover and check inside and out to make sure that the mouthpiece is clean.
    3. Shake the inhaler 4 or 5 times; this will remove any loose objects from the inhaler and make sure that the contents are properly mixed together to provide effective treatment.
    4. Hold the inhaler upright and with your thumb on the base. Breathe out as far as you can, without breathing in again.
    5. Insert the mouthpiece into your mouth, between your teeth. Close your lips around the mouthpiece, but do not bite it.
    6. Breathe in through your mouth. Just after you start to breathe in, press down on the top of the canister to release a puff of the medicine. Keep breathing in steadily.
    7. Hold your breath and take the inhaler out of your mouth, with your finger on the top of the canister. Continue to hold your breath for a few seconds afterwards.
    8. If your doctor has instructed you to take two puffs of your inhaler, wait for around 30 seconds before taking a second puff. If you are instructed to take a second puff, repeat steps 3 to 7.
    9. After using your inhaler, replace the mouthpiece cover by clicking it into position, immediately, to keep out dust and dirt.

    If you have been diagnosed with Asthma and are at risk of suffering from asthma attacks, it is important that you know exactly how to use a Ventolin inhaler.

  3. Ventolin Side Effects

    For a detailed guide on Ventolin's side effects, read our helpful medical guide.

    Like all salbutamol inhalers, Ventolin does come with the risk of side effects, although not everyone who takes it will get them.

    Common side effects may affect up to 1 in every 10 people and include:

    • Headaches
    • Feeling shaky

    Uncommon side effects may affect 1 in every 100 people and include:

    • Muscle cramps
    • Irritation in the mouth and throat

    Speak to your doctor if any of these side effects bother you or do not go away. 

    Always read the patient information leaflet for a comprehensive list of side effects you may suffer while using Ventolin.

  4. Ventolin Warnings and Drug Interactions

    Ventolin may interact with other medicines you are taking at the same time.

    In particular, your doctor should be aware if you are currently taking or have recently taken any of the following:

    • Xanthine derivatives or steroids to treat asthma
    • Any water tablets (diuretics), which are sometimes prescribed as a treatment for high blood pressure or a heart problem
    • Any other medicines to treat asthma symptoms
    • Any medicines for an irregular heartbeat or a fast heartbeat

    More information on Ventolin drug interactions can be found in this article.

    Always read the patient information leaflet for a full list of warnings and drug interactions.

    Pregnancy and breastfeeding

    Salbutamol is considered safe to use during pregnancy and breastfeeding, as per NHS guidance.

    However, it is still recommended that you inform your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

  5. Ventolin Ingredients

    The main active ingredient within this medicine is: Salbutamol sulfate

    For a full list of the inactive ingredients, please read the Summary of Product Characteristics.

  6. How much does it cost to buy Ventolin online in the UK?

    Dosage Quantity Price (starting from)
    Ventolin Inhaler 100mcg 1 Inhaler £12.99
    Ventolin Inhaler 100mcg 2 Inhalers £18.99
  7. Should I use a ventolin inhaler during an asthma attack?


    Yes, a ventolin inhaler is fast acting and will instantly relieve breathing difficulties during an asthma attack.

    Is it safe to use Salbutamol for a long time?


    Yes, Salbutamol inhalers such as Ventolin are intended for long term use. Salbutamol does not cause any long lasting side effects.

    Is ventolin (Salbutamol) a steroid?


    No, Ventolin (Salbutamol) is not a steroid, it is classed as a bronchodilator which is used to relax the muscles in the airways.

    When should I use ventolin?


    You should use your inhaler whenever you experience symptoms of asthma, during an asthma attack, or come into contact with a known asthma trigger.

    Is Ventolin the same as Salbutamol?


    Ventolin is a branded version of the Salbutamol inhaler.

    What is the price of a ventolin inhaler in the UK?


    Prices start from £12.99 for 1 inhaler.

    Do I need a prescription for Ventolin?


    To buy ventolin, you need to have a valid UK prescription that has been issued by a UK doctor or prescriber.

    Can you buy Ventolin inhalers over the counter?


    Ventolin is a prescription only medicine, it is not available to buy over the counter.

Written byHussain Abdeh MPharm: 2211840

Published on: 12/10/2020

Updated on: 12/05/2021

This content has been written by our Superintendent Pharmacist Hussain Abdeh and has been medically reviewed by our Pharmacist Sonia Khan

Hussain Abdeh Superintendent Pharmacist at Medicine Direct

Hussain Abdeh
MPharm: 2211840

Pharmacist Independent Prescriber

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