Atrovent is an extended action bronchodilator containing ipratropium - a so called antimuscarinic bronchodilator. This drug is mainly prescribed to treat COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) including such conditions as emphysema or chronic bronchitis. Atrovent is designed to provide long-lasting beneficial effects for the user. With that being said, the actual effects of the drug only last for 4 to 6 hours, to par with ordinary bronchodilators like albuterol. However, there are two main differences between Atrovent and fast-acting "reliever" inhalers. First, Atrovent Inhaler has a much longer set-in period, which is why it may not be used to relieve an acute bronchospasm or help with an imminent asthma attack. Second, the lasting effect of Atrovent is more or less stable during the first 4-5 hours, while that of other bronchodilators subsides rapidly after the first hour has passed, significantly improving therapeutic potency of Atrovent. Naturally, this drug can only provide improvement of the patient's condition if used regularly, 3 to 4 times a day, making it more convenient to buy Atrovent online if you are going to have to undergo an extended term of treatment.
Atrovent Mechanism of Action and Side Effects
The main active ingredient in Atrovent is ipratropium, an antimuscarinic. When inhaled, this drug affects specific receptors in the lungs and airways that play a key role in controlling the tension of soft muscles throughout the upper respiratory tract system as well as in other parts of the body. Technically, Atrovent is a bronchodilator - a medication that opens up the airways to allow more air into the lungs. The difference from other bronchodilator medications is that ipratropium affects different types of receptors and thus provides a different type of medical action; it has a more stable and lasting effect on the lungs and airways, but has a different set of possible side effects. One of the most serious adverse reactions that Atrovent may cause are eye and eyesight problems - if this medication accidently gets into the eyes it may cause blurred vision or partial loss of vision, red eyes, seeing haloes around lights, headaches, loss of balance, and in rare cases it may accelerate the development of glaucoma.
Safety of Using Atrovent in Children
There have been controversial testimonials and medical study results about using this drug in children. In the official indication, Atrovent inhaler as well its active ingredient ipratropium is not suited to treat COPD in children and is thus officially considered an adult only medication. However, more and more cases have been seen when doctors have prescribed Atrovent for children 1.5 to 6 years old, not for the purpose of treatment of COPD symptoms but to help overcome phlegm and mucus retention during a cold or other type of systemic or upper respiratory tract infection. It is true that in some cases a child may suffer a more intense infection than usual, resulting in need of antibiotics and other potentially harmful drugs. It is also true that antimuscarinic medications such as ipratropium bromide used in Atrovent are known to reduce fluid retention from glands that secrete mucus and phlegm during an infection - a nasal spray solution of ipratropium is often used as means to treat a runny nose caused by a cold or allergies. The practice that was occasionally recommended involves using Atrovent several (2-5) times a day when the child is having trouble overcoming an infection and has to cough out large amounts of mucus. The effectiveness, necessity as well as safety of such a treatment is doubtful - this drug was not allowed for use in children for a good reason, and it certainly was not tested enough to guarantee efficiency and absence of harmful reaction if used this way. Parents should think twice before they buy Atrovent online to help treat a persistent cold. Added to this is a fact that ipratropium bromide is known to cause eye problems if accidently misused - something that is more than likely to happen if used by a child, with or without the help of a parent.