There is not likely to be any significant differences in how the different brands of ventolin work in terms of treating the acute symptoms of asthma. People may have their preferences in terms of which brand of ventolin works better for them, but there are no known studies showing that one brand is superior to another.
Ventolin does have the advantage of having a dose counter on the inhaler, showing how many puffs of ventolin remain in the canister (ProAir and Proventil don’t have dose counters). This is an extremely important feature, since it is otherwise nearly impossible to tell how many puffs remain in an ventolin inhaler without having a dose counter.
A study published in 2006 demonstrated the importance of having a dose counter on ventolin inhalers asthma-inhalers-online.com. Twenty-five percent (25%) of asthmatics surveyed in this study reported finding that their ventolin inhaler was empty during the time of an asthma attack. In those finding an empty inhaler during an attack, nearly 90% thought that their ventolin inhaler was empty when it stopped spraying -– these people were unaware that propellant continues to spray long after the ventolin medication has run out, so these asthmatics were only inhaling propellant for many doses.
Hydrofluoroalkane, or HFA, inhalers use a different form of propellant compared to the older CFC (chlorofluorocarbon) inhalers. CFCs have been found to damage the ozone layer and cause other environmental problems. HFA and CFC inhalers work essentially the same and the change to HFA inhalers has not affected the delivery of medication.
Many people with asthma have noticed a change in their ventolin inhaler recently -– the old, white generic CFC (chlorofluorocarbon)-propellant ventolin inhalers have been replaced by brand-name HFA-propellant ventolin inhalers. While this change is in the interest of the environment and preservation of the earth’s ozone layer.
How Do I Use an Ventolin Inhaler?
The proper technique for using HFA inhalers is somewhat different from the use of the older CFC inhalers. The end of the HFA can now be placed direct inside the mouth to be used, while the CFC inhalers were recommended to be placed a few inches in front of the mouth.
The use of a spacer was recommended with the CFC inhalers, whereas manufacturers of HFA inhalers don’t mention the use of a spacer in the prescribing information. This doesn’t mean that a spacer can’t be used – in fact, many experts still recommend the use of a spacer with the HFA inhalers.