Xopenex vs Albuterol Asthma Medications Video

Alfin G. Vicencio, MD Attending in Pediatric Pulmonary Steven and Alexandra Cohen Childrens Med Center, explains the differences between Xopenex and Albuterol.
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Xopenex vs Albuterol Asthma Medications Male: There are a couple of medicines we use when a kid is in an attack. The most commonly used one is Albuterol. It’s relatively inexpensive and there’s a little bit more expensive called Xopenex. Is there any justifications spending extra money for Xopenex or Albuterol in our lives? Alfin G. Vicencio: There are certain people who believe that the Xopenex will cause less side effects and there are some children who actually do not respond very well to Albutero because it leads to a lot of side effects for example jitteriness, elevated heart rate. Most of the studies that have been done don’t necessarily show a difference in side effects between the two medications. However, the problem is, is that we -- right now, we actually don’t have the tools to properly predict which children are going to benefit from something like Xopenex and there are probably several differences in patients from a genetic basis that would mandate the use of the more expensive Xopenex as compared to the Albuterol. Male: Well, we get some kids that shake. Alfin G. Vicencio: Yes. Male: And we put them on Albuterol, they shake and with Xopenex they don’t shake and that’s pretty good test. Alfin G. Vicencio: Yeah that is a pretty good test. Male: But if they don’t shake, they are on Albuterol. I find the difference is finding the cause most times. There is always an exception to every rule is that correct? Alfin G. Vicencio: I agree.

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