Salmeterol is a long-acting beta-2 agonist which is used in the treatment of asthma as an adjunct to inhaled corticosteroids.
The long-lasting action of salmeterol means that it may be taken regularly, twice per day; it is not effective for the relief of an acute asthma attack.
- clinicians should continue to be aware of the possible risks associated
with the long-term use of long-acting beta2 agonists (LABAs, i.e. salmeterol
- should be used only in conjunction with inhaled corticosteroids
- for the management of chronic asthma, LABAs should:
- be added only if regular use of standard-dose inhaled corticosteroids has failed to control asthma adequately;
- not be initiated in patients with rapidly deteriorating asthma;
- be introduced at a low dose and the effect properly monitored before considering dose increase;
- be discontinued in the absence of benefit;
- be reviewed as clinically appropriate: stepping down therapy should be considered when good long-term asthma control has been achieved
- (1) Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network/British Thoracic Society: British Guideline on the Management of Asthma. A national clinical guideline. May 2008.
- (2) MHRA. Asthma: long-acting ß2 agonists. Accessed from www.mhra.gov.uk/Safetyinformation/Generalsafetyinformationandadvice/Product-specificinformationandadvice/Asthma/CON2025447s on 05/09/08.
Last reviewed 01/2018