Many asthma and COPD patients could be breathing better if they used a long-acting controller medication on a daily basis.
Of course, many of these patients could also breathe better if they stopped smoking or avoided exposure to animals, but I’ll leave that for another day.
Today I’ll address one issue only. Perhaps your doctor has advised you to try a controller drug but so far you’ve avoided doing so due to the cost. You really don’t know how much better you’d feel. But you can find out - and for free.
If you take the medication for a month and discover you’re far better off, you may want to continue the medication. If you discover the medication hasn’t helped you at all, then you haven’t spent a dime on a prescription.
Advair is a controller medication that combines an inhaled steroid with a long-acting bronchodilator. With time, the low-dose steroid reduces swelling in your bronchial tubes and makes your lungs less likely to react to pet dander, pollen, and other allergens. The bronchodilator keeps your air passages open similar to the short-acting inhaler you already have, but for about 12 hours instead of 3 or 4. The inhaler device is easy to use and has very few side-effects. You can get a coupon for your first month of Advair free at: http://www.advair.com/copd/coupons-and-special-offers/coupons-special-offers.html.
Symbicort is a similar, newer medication with a little quicker onset of action. It starts working several minutes more quickly, but in the long-term scheme of things, that may or may not matter to you (since these medications are intended to control symptoms rather than provide immediate relief like your rescue inhaler). Currently the manufacturer does not offer a free trial offer, but they do offer a discount for $75 off a month’s prescription at: http://www.mysymbicort.com/copd/coupon-prescription-savings.aspx.
If you still cannot afford the price, ask your doctor if you could try Advair instead, or request a sample from your doctor, or check into the patient assistance program for Symbicort at: http://www.astrazeneca-us.com/help-affording-your-medicines/.
Advair offers a similar program at: http://www.gskforyou.com/
© Cynthia J Koelker, MD – All rights reserved