Beconase

1 What is Beconase?

Brand: Beconase, Beconase AQ, Flonase, Nasacort, Nasalide, Nasarel, Nasonex, Omnaris, Rhinocort, Tri-Nasal, Vancenase, Vancenase AQ, Vancenase AQ Double Strength, Veramyst, Zetonna, Beconase AQ

Generic: Corticosteroid

Beconase, a hormone naturally produced by the body's adrenal glands. This group of medications is considered as the mainstay of treatment for acute flare-ups of disease because of its anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive effects.

Most patients notice an improvement in symptoms within days of starting corticosteroids. In general, corticosteroids are recommended only for short-term use in order to achieve remission.

Nasal corticosteroid administration appears to be a relatively safe and effective treatment for cases of with sinusitis, hay fever, allergic and non-allergic rhinitis that have not responded to other medical therapy.

However, nasal corticosteroid preparations are generally sprayed or inhaled into the nose to help relieve the stuffy nose, irritation, and discomfort of hay fever, other allergies, and other nasal problems. In addition, these medicines are often used to prevent nasal polyps from growing back after they have been removed by surgery.

Nasal corticosteroids are available in the following dosage forms only with your doctor's prescription:

  • Aerosol Liquid
  • Aerosol Powder
  • Spray

2 What to Know Before Using

Before using Beconase, you must know all about the risks and complications associated with it. The suitable drug therapy is usually chosen by a doctor with the active participation of the patient.

There are some important factors such as drug interactions, the presence of any metabolic impairment, history of hypersensitivity reaction, pregnancy, lactation etc. that may alter the desired therapeutic effects of a medicine.

Sometimes the presence of other health disorders affects the beneficial effects of this medicine and even may cause serious toxic effects. If you have had any allergic reactions to any medicine then you must tell your doctor about that. The use of corticosteroid is contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to this drug or any of the components.

Make sure you inform your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Active infections (virus, bacteria, or fungus)—nasal corticosteroids may cover up the signs of these conditions.
  • Bronchial asthma—these drugs may make this condition worse.
  • Cardiovascular disease (e.g. hypertension i.e. high blood pressure)
  • Type 2 diabetes mellitus—use of dexamethasone may decrease carbohydrate tolerance, worsening blood glucose control and warranting an increase in insulin dosage.
  • Intracranial hypertension (increased pressure in the head) — caution should be exercised because this medicine may make these conditions worse.
  • Glaucoma—long-term use of nasal corticosteroids may worsen glaucoma by increasing the pressure within the eye.
  • Injury to the nose (recent)
  • Nose surgery (recent)
  • Sores in the nose—nasal corticosteroids may prevent proper healing of these conditions.
  • Recent heart attack—use of dexamethasone may worsen these conditions.
  • Acute psychosis
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease
  • Tuberculosis
  • Underactive thyroid—these drugs may worsen these conditions.

In addition, certain medicines should not be used along with this medicine. It is always recommended to consult with your doctor if you are in need of some other medications or even any over-the-counter medicine for another health problem in order to avoid unwanted toxic effects.

Besides, the following drug interactions should be kept in mind:

  • Thiazides may enhance hyperglycemia and hypokalemia caused by corticosteroids.
  • Increased incidence of peptic ulcer or gastrointestinal bleeding with concurrent NSAID administration.
  • Response to anticoagulants may be altered.
  • The dose of antidiabetic and antihypertensive drugs needs to be increased.
  • Decreases serum concentration of salicylates and antimuscarinic agents.
  • Ethanol may enhance gastric mucosal irritation.
  • Reduced efficacy with concurrent use of carbamazepine, phenytoin, barbiturates, and rifampicin.
  • Mutual inhibition of metabolism occurs between cyclosporine and corticosteroids which cause increased plasma concentration of both drugs.
  • The enhanced effect in women taking estrogens or oral contraceptives.

Animal reproduction studies have shown an adverse effect on the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in humans. If corticosteroids are medically necessary during pregnancy to control nasal problems, nasal corticosteroids are generally considered safer than corticosteroids taken by mouth or injection. But these drugs should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed.

Besides, use of dexamethasone is not recommended in nursing mothers, since dexamethasone passes into breast milk and may affect the infant's growth. It is not known whether beclomethasone, budesonide, flunisolide, fluticasone or triamcinolone passes into breast milk.

3 Proper Usage

To use Beconase properly, you must follow all instructions given by your doctor. The dosage schedule and the duration of drug therapy generally depend on upon the particular medical problem for which you are going to use this medicine. The therapeutic dose may also vary with the patient’s condition or requirement and the strength of the medicine as well.

This medicine comes with patient information. You should read and follow the instructions carefully before using this medicine. However, different preparations and doses are listed below:

For beclomethasone

For treatment of allergies or other nasal conditions:

  • For nasal aerosol dosage form:
    • Adults and children 6 years of age and older— 1 spray in each nostril 2 to 4 times a day.
    • Children up to 6 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
  • For nasal suspension dosage form:
    • Adults and children 6 years of age and older— 1 or 2 sprays in each nostril 2 times a day.
    • Children up to 6 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

For budesonide

For treatment of allergies or other nasal conditions:

  • For nasal powder dosage form:
    • Adults and children 6 years of age and older— 2 inhalations in each nostril once a day in the morning.
    • Children up to 6 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
  • For nasal suspension dosage form:
    • Adults and children 6 years of age and older— 1 or 2 sprays in each nostril 1 or 2 times a day.
    • Children up to 6 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

For dexamethasone

For treatment of allergies or other nasal conditions:

  • For nasal aerosol dosage form:
    • Adults and children 12 years of age and older— 2 sprays in each nostril 2 or 3 times a day for up to 2 weeks.
    • Children 6 to 12 years of age— 1 or 2 sprays in each nostril twice a day for up to 2 weeks.
    • Children up to 6 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

For flunisolide

For treatment of allergies or other nasal conditions:

  • For nasal solution dosage form:
    • Adults and children 6 years of age and older— 1or 2 sprays in each nostril 1 to 3 times a day.
    • Children up to 6 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

For fluticasone

For treatment of allergies or other nasal conditions:

  • For nasal suspension dosage form:
    • Adults and children 4 years of age and older— 1 or 2 sprays in each nostril 1 or 2 times a day.
    • Children up to 4 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

For mometasone

For treatment of allergies or other nasal conditions:

  • For nasal suspension dosage form:
    • Adults and children 12 years of age and older— 1 or 2 sprays in each nostril once a day.
    • Children up to 12 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

For triamcinolone

For treatment of allergies or other nasal conditions:

  • For nasal aerosol dosage form:
    • Adults and children 12 years of age and older) — 1 or 2 sprays in each nostril once a day.
    • Children 6 to 12 years of age— 1 to 2 sprays in each nostril once a day.
    • Children 2 to 5 years of age— not more than one spray in each nostril once a day.
    • Children less than 2 years of age— use is not recommended.
  • For nasal suspension dosage form:
    • Adults and children 6 years of age and older— 1or 2 sprays in each nostril once a day.
    • Children up to 6 years of age— use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. But, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use this drug in larger amounts, more often, or for a longer time than your doctor ordered. To do so may increase the chance of absorption through the lining of the nose and the chance of side effects.

Further, it is advised to store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature away from heat, moisture, and direct light. All kinds of medicines should be kept out of the reach of children. However, outdated medicines should be disposed of by an appropriate way.

4 Precautions to Take

Before using Beconase, there are some precautions you must take. Firstly, regular visits to your doctor are recommended to check that this medicine is working properly or not.

Additionally, the following guidelines should be followed to prevent unwanted complications as well as for the better prognosis of the patients:

Corticosteroids cause the adrenal glands to slow or stop the production of cortisol, they cannot be discontinued abruptly. Gradually tapering the dose of corticosteroids allows the body to begin producing its own supply of cortisol again. That’s why; you should not stop using this medicine without first checking with your doctor.

If your symptoms do not improve within 7 days (for dexamethasone), or within 3 weeks (for beclomethasone, budesonide, flunisolide, fluticasone, mometasone, or triamcinolone), or your condition becomes worse, you should check with your doctor.

If you notice nasal bleeding, pain, irritation, burning, itching, blistering, or any other sign of nose, sinus, or throat infection that you did not have before you started using this medicine, check with your doctor immediately.

Before having any kind of surgery (including dental surgery) or emergency treatment, inform the doctor in charge that you are using this medicine.

Avoid close contact with anyone who has chickenpox or measles. This is especially important for children. Tell your doctor right away if you think you have been exposed to chickenpox or measles.

While you are being treated with this medicine, and after you stop taking it, do not have any immunizations without your doctor's approval.

This medicine may affect blood glucose (sugar) levels. If you notice a change in the results of your blood or urine sugar tests or if you have any questions, check with your doctor.

5 Potential Side Effects

Make sure you meet with your doctor in using Beconase to avoid unwanted potential side effects. Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects including dryness and irritation of the nose and throat, unpleasant taste, and smell.

These side effects usually go away during the treatment episode as your body adjusts to the medicine. Your healthcare professional may advise you about the ways how to prevent or reduce those unwanted side effects.

Sometimes you may need to consult with the doctor immediately if you notice any of the following toxic effects, especially:

Local Adverse Effects:

  • Atrophy
  • Telangiectasia
  • Striae
  • Easy Bruising
  • Hypopigmentation
  • Irritation
  • Burning Sensation
  • Dryness
  • Edema
  • Folliculitis
  • Hypersensitivity Reactions
  • Secondary Infections (Fungal & Bacterial)

Systemic Adverse Effects:

  • Adrenal pituitary suppression can occur if large amounts are applied repeatedly. Infants and children are particularly susceptible.
  • Rarely, Cushing’s syndrome has been reported.

Miscellaneous:

  • Acne
  • Cataract
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • High blood sugar levels
  • Increased risk of infection
  • Increased facial hair
  • Insomnia (difficulty sleeping)
  • Mood swings
  • Psychosis and other psychiatric symptoms
  • Rounding of the face (moon face)
  • Stretch marks
  • Weakened bones (osteoporosis)
  • Weight gain

The undesirable side effects of corticosteroids are dependent on both dose and duration of treatment. For many, the side effects of steroids outweigh their anti-inflammatory benefits. Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

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