Advair is available as either a dry powder or a HFA inhaler. Advair contains two active medicines: fluticasone (a corticosteroid) and salmeterol (a long acting bronchodilator or LABA).
Fluticasone propionate is a synthetic corticosteroid with potent anti-inflammatory activity. Inflammation is an important component in the pathogenesis of asthma. The anti-inflammatory actions of corticosteroids contribute to their efficacy in asthma.
Salmeterol is a long-acting beta2-adrenergic agonist (bronchodilator, opens the airways).
ADVAIR does not relieve sudden symptoms of shortness of breathe. Always have a short-acting beta2-agonist medicine with you to treat sudden symptoms.
ADVAIR should be used only if your healthcare provider decides that another asthma-controller medicine alone does not control your asthma or that you need 2 asthma-controller medicines
ADVAIR is used long term, twice a day to control symptoms of asthma, and prevent symptoms of asthma such as wheezing.
Possible side effects with ADVAIR include
Serious allergic reactions including rash, hives, swelling of the face, mouth, and tongue and breathing problems may occur. Call your healthcare provider or get emergency medical care if you get any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction.
Other common side effects are increased blood pressure, fast and irregular heartbeat, chest pain, headache, tremor, nervousness, immune system effects and a higher chance for infections lower bone mineral density, eye problems including glaucoma and cataracts, slowed growth in children, throat irritation.
Long-acting beta2-adrenergic agonists, such as salmeterol, one of the active ingredients in ADVAIR, may increase the risk of asthma-related death. Therefore, when treating patients with asthma, physicians should only prescribe ADVAIR for patients not adequately controlled on other asthma-controller medications (e.g., low- to medium-dose inhaled corticosteroids) or whose disease severity clearly warrants initiation of treatment with 2 maintenance therapies. Data from a large placebo-controlled US study that compared the safety of salmeterol (SEREVENT® Inhalation Aerosol) or placebo added to usual asthma therapy showed an increase in asthma-related deaths in patients receiving salmeterol (13 deaths out of 13,176 patients treated for 28 weeks on salmeterol versus 3 deaths out of 13,179 patients on placebo) (see WARNINGS).
Adapted from Source: http://www.fda.gov/cder/foi/label/2008/021254s003,020692s031lbl.pdf