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What should I know about Spiriva (tiotropium) before taking it?

You should know that tiotropium is used for prevention of asthma attacks and will not work immediately if used while a person is having an acute attack. Tiotropium comes in a capsule form, but this capsule should never be swallowed. It should be taken as your doctor recommends, usually once every day at the same time of day. Make sure you inhale from the mouth piece and never breathe into the HandiHaler. The typical dose is two inhaled breaths once daily. Make sure to take only the prescribed amount and never take more than one dose a day. After administering your two breaths, rinse your mouth. This will prevent dryness and irritation of your throat and mouth. Never stop taking this medication suddenly. Take care to keep any powder away from your eyes. If symptoms continue, call your doctor as this medication may not be right for you. Risks involved in taking this medication include an allergic reaction, with swelling of the lips, throat, and tongue, leading to difficulty breathing. Itching and rash are also signs of an allergic reaction. Bladder outlet obstruction or prostatic hyperplasia can occur when taking tiotropium, making it difficult to urinate or blocking urination completely. Alert your doctor if you have an enlarged prostate or any condition that obstructs your bladder. Paradoxical bronchospasms may occur. These are bronchospasms that are actually caused by taking this medication. If you have eye pain, see halos, or your vision is blurred while taking tiotropium, contact your doctor immediately, as these may be symptoms of acute narrow-angle glaucoma. There is insufficient evidence to prove whether tiotropium causes cancer or is harmful to children, pregnant women, or nursing mothers. If you have an allergy to milk proteins, atropine, or ipatropium you should let your doctor know. Other medications that may interact with tiotropium include belladonna, cimetidine (Tagamet), clidinium (Quarzan), dicyclomine (Bentyl), glycopyrrolate (Robinul), hyoscyamine (Anaspaz, Cystospaz, Levsin), mepenzolate (Cantil), methantheline (Provocholine), methscopolamine (Pamine), propantheline (Pro-Banthine), and scopolamine (Transderm-Scop). Tell your doctor about the vitamins, herbal products, or other over-the-counter medications you are taking.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.