Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is SPIRIVA?

    SPIRIVA is a once-daily, inhaled prescription maintenance medicine for COPD. Taken once daily, SPIRIVA helps to keep airways open for a full 24 hours, helping to improve lung function and reduce your risk of COPD flare-ups (also called exacerbations).

    Learn more about SPIRIVA

  2. How does SPIRIVA work?

    SPIRIVA works by relaxing the tiny muscles in your airways, helping to get them open and keep them open for a full 24 hours. You may start breathing better from the first dose, but it may take longer to feel the full effects. Even if you don't feel it working, your lungs do. It’s important to give SPIRIVA time to work for you.

    Learn about what to expect from SPIRIVA

  3. What can I expect when taking SPIRIVA?

    SPIRIVA is a maintenance medicine. For SPIRIVA to work, you need to take it once a day, every day. SPIRIVA starts working right from the first dose. It may take a couple of weeks for you to notice the full effects. But even if you don't feel it working, your lungs do. It’s important to give SPIRIVA time to work for you.

    In clinical studies, patients taking SPIRIVA HandiHaler used their rescue inhalers less often. But SPIRIVA HandiHaler cannot replace your rescue inhaler for treating sudden breathing problems. Your doctor may give you other medicine to use for sudden breathing problems.

    See what else you can expect from SPIRIVA

  4. How should I take SPIRIVA HandiHaler?

    It’s important to take SPIRIVA HandiHaler once a day as directed by your doctor. When used as directed, SPIRIVA HandiHaler helps to keep your airways open for a full 24 hours, as well as reduce the likelihood of COPD flare-ups.

    SPIRIVA HandiHaler is a dry powder that comes in a capsule. You insert the capsule in the HandiHaler and inhale the powder through your mouth.

    Do not swallow the capsule. Before you use SPIRIVA HandiHaler for the first time, and each time you refill your prescription, carefully read the Instructions for Use.

    Get step-by-step instructions for using SPIRIVA HandiHaler

  5. How should I take SPIRIVA RESPIMAT?

    It’s important to take SPIRIVA RESPIMAT once a day as directed by your doctor. When used as directed, SPIRIVA RESPIMAT helps to keep your airways open for a full 24 hours, as well as reduce the likelihood of COPD flare-ups.

    Before you use SPIRIVA RESPIMAT for the first time, and each time you refill your prescription, carefully read the Instructions for Use.

    Get step-by-step instructions for using SPIRIVA RESPIMAT

  6. What should I tell my doctor before using SPIRIVA?

    Before taking SPIRIVA, tell your doctor about all your medical conditions and medications:

    • Tell your doctor if you have kidney problems, glaucoma, enlarged prostate, problems passing urine or blockage in your bladder
    • Tell your doctor all the medicines you take, including eye drops. Ask your doctor if you are taking any anticholinergic medicines because taking them together with SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can increase side effects
    • Before using SPIRIVA HandiHaler, tell your doctor if you have a severe allergy to milk proteins

    Read the Important Safety Information

  7. Who should not use SPIRIVA?

    Do not use SPIRIVA if you are allergic to tiotropium, ipratropium (e.g., Atrovent®), or any of the ingredients in SPIRIVA.

    Symptoms of a serious reaction to SPIRIVA may include raised red patches on your skin (hives), itching, rash, or swelling of the face, lips, tongue, and throat that may cause difficulty in breathing or swallowing.

    Do not use SPIRIVA HandiHaler if you have a severe allergy to milk proteins.

    Read the Important Safety Information

  8. What should I avoid while taking SPIRIVA?

    Do not spray SPIRIVA RESPIMAT into your eyes. Do not let the powder from the SPIRIVA HandiHaler capsule get into your eyes. Your vision may get blurry and the pupil in your eye may get larger (dilate). If this happens, call your doctor.

    SPIRIVA can cause dizziness and blurred vision. Should you experience these symptoms, you should use caution when engaging in activities such as driving a car or operating appliances or other machines. Should you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor.

    Read the Important Safety Information

  9. What are the possible side effects of SPIRIVA?

    SPIRIVA can cause serious side effects, including:

    • Allergic reaction. Symptoms may include:
      • raised red patches on your skin (hives)
      • itching
      • rash
      • swelling of the lips, tongue, or throat that may cause difficulty in breathing or swallowing
      If you have these symptoms of an allergic reaction, stop taking SPIRIVA and call your doctor right away or go to the nearest hospital emergency room.
    • Sudden narrowing and blockage of the airways into the lungs (bronchospasm). Your breathing suddenly gets worse. If you have these symptoms of bronchospasm, stop taking SPIRIVA and call your doctor right away or go to the nearest hospital emergency room.

    • New or worsened increased pressure in the eyes (acute narrow-angle glaucoma). Symptoms of acute narrow angle glaucoma may include:

      • eye pain
      • blurred vision
      • seeing halos (visual halos) or colored images along with red eyes

      Using only eye drops to treat these symptoms may not work. If you have these symptoms, stop taking SPIRIVA and call your doctor right away.

    • New or worsened urinary retention. Symptoms of blockage in your bladder and/or enlarged prostate may include: difficulty passing urine, painful urination.

      If you have these symptoms of urinary retention, stop taking SPIRIVA and call your doctor right away.

    The most common side effects with SPIRIVA HandiHaler include:

    • upper respiratory tract infection
    • dry mouth
    • sinus infection
    • sore throat
    • non-specific chest pain
    • urinary tract infection
    • indigestion
    • runny nose
    • constipation
    • increased heart rate
    • blurred vision

    The most common side effects with SPIRIVA RESPIMAT include:

    • sore throat
    • cough
    • dry mouth
    • sinus infection

    These are not all the possible side effects with SPIRIVA. Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

    Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

  10. Can I take SPIRIVA if I still smoke?

    Yes. Quitting smoking is the only thing that you can do to actually slow the progression of COPD, but SPIRIVA can still help you breathe better.

  11. How long will I have to take SPIRIVA?

    SPIRIVA is a once-daily COPD maintenance medicine. You should take it once a day, every day, as prescribed by your doctor. COPD is a chronic condition that requires long-term treatment.

  12. How do I clean and store SPIRIVA?

    SPIRIVA HandiHaler: You should clean your device as needed. Please note that it takes 24 hours to air-dry your device after a cleaning. You should not use cleaning agents or detergents, and you should not place your HandiHaler in the dishwasher for cleaning.

    Click here for full Prescribing Information, including Instructions for Use

    SPIRIVA RESPIMAT: You should clean the mouthpiece, including the metal part inside the mouthpiece, with a damp cloth or tissue only, at least once a week. If the outside of your SPIRIVA RESPIMAT inhaler gets dirty, wipe it with a damp cloth.

    Click here for full Prescribing Information, including Instructions for Use

  13. What is COPD?

    COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) is a serious lung disease caused by long-term damage to the airways that usually causes breathing to get worse over time. COPD can include chronic bronchitis, emphysema, or both. Most COPD is caused by smoking. When you have COPD, your airways become narrow. So, air moves out of your lungs more slowly. This makes it hard to breathe.COPD also includes episodes called flare-ups (also known as exacerbations).

    COPD is not the same as asthma. And although smoking is the number one cause of COPD, COPD is more than just smoker’s cough. You don’t have to be an active smoker to have COPD.

    Learn more about COPD and SPIRIVA

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION for SPIRIVA HandiHaler and SPIRIVA RESPIMAT

Do not use SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT if you are allergic to tiotropium, ipratropium, atropine or similar drugs, or any ingredient in these medicines.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT are not rescue medicines and should not be used for treating sudden breathing problems. Your doctor may give you other medicine to use for sudden breathing problems.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can cause allergic reactions. Symptoms can include raised red patches on your skin (hives), itching, rash and/or swelling of the lips, tongue or throat that may cause difficulty in breathing or swallowing. If you have any of these symptoms, stop taking the medicine and get immediate medical help.

Before using SPIRIVA HandiHaler, tell your doctor if you have a severe allergy to milk proteins.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can cause your breathing to suddenly get worse (bronchospasm). If this happens, stop taking your medicine, use your rescue inhaler and call your doctor right away or go to the nearest emergency room.

Tell your doctor about all your medical conditions including kidney problems, glaucoma, enlarged prostate, problems passing urine or blockage in your bladder.

Tell your doctor all the medicines you take, including eye drops. Ask your doctor if you are taking any anticholinergic medicines because taking them together with SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can increase side effects.

Do not take SPIRIVA HandiHaler and SPIRIVA RESPIMAT together.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can increase the pressure in your eyes (acute narrow-angle glaucoma) which can cause the following symptoms: eye pain, blurred vision, seeing halos or colored images along with red eyes. If you have any of these symptoms, stop taking your medicine and call your doctor right away.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can cause new or worsened urinary retention. Symptoms of blockage in your bladder and/or enlarged prostate may include difficulty passing urine and/or painful urination. If you have any of these symptoms, stop taking your medicine and call your doctor right away.

Dizziness and blurred vision may occur with SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT. If you experience these symptoms, use caution when engaging in activities such as driving a car or operating appliances or other machines.

The most common side effects with SPIRIVA HandiHaler include upper respiratory tract infection, dry mouth, sinus infection, sore throat, non-specific chest pain, urinary tract infection, indigestion, runny nose, constipation, increased heart rate and blurred vision.

The most common side effects reported with SPIRIVA RESPIMAT include sore throat, cough, dry mouth and sinus infection.

Do not swallow SPIRIVA capsules. The contents of the capsule should only be inhaled through your mouth using the HandiHaler device. Do not use your HandiHaler device to take other medications.

Do not spray SPIRIVA RESPIMAT into your eyes as this may cause blurring of vision and pupil dilation.

INDICATIONS

Spiriva® HandiHaler® (tiotropium bromide inhalation powder) and SPIRIVA® RESPIMAT® (tiotropium bromide) Inhalation Spray are prescription medicines used once daily (maintenance medicines) to control symptoms of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) by relaxing your airways and keeping them open. COPD includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler and SPIRIVA RESPIMAT also reduce the likelihood of flare-ups (COPD exacerbations).

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Please see full Prescribing Information for SPIRIVA RESPIMAT, including Instructions for Use, and full Prescribing Information for SPIRIVA HandiHaler, including Patient Information and Instructions for Use.

The information provided on this site is for general information and educational purposes only. You should always consult a doctor for diagnosing and treating a health or fitness problem, and before using any drug product discussed on this site.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION for SPIRIVA HandiHaler and SPIRIVA RESPIMAT

Do not use SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT if you are allergic to tiotropium, ipratropium, atropine or similar drugs, or any ingredient in these medicines.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT are not rescue medicines and should not be used for treating sudden breathing problems. Your doctor may give you other medicine to use for sudden breathing problems.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can cause allergic reactions. Symptoms can include raised red patches on your skin (hives), itching, rash and/or swelling of the lips, tongue or throat that may cause difficulty in breathing or swallowing. If you have any of these symptoms, stop taking the medicine and get immediate medical help.

Before using SPIRIVA HandiHaler, tell your doctor if you have a severe allergy to milk proteins.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can cause your breathing to suddenly get worse (bronchospasm). If this happens, stop taking your medicine, use your rescue inhaler and call your doctor right away or go to the nearest emergency room.

Tell your doctor about all your medical conditions including kidney problems, glaucoma, enlarged prostate, problems passing urine or blockage in your bladder.

Tell your doctor all the medicines you take, including eye drops. Ask your doctor if you are taking any anticholinergic medicines because taking them together with SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can increase side effects.

Do not take SPIRIVA HandiHaler and SPIRIVA RESPIMAT together.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can increase the pressure in your eyes (acute narrow-angle glaucoma) which can cause the following symptoms: eye pain, blurred vision, seeing halos or colored images along with red eyes. If you have any of these symptoms, stop taking your medicine and call your doctor right away.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT can cause new or worsened urinary retention. Symptoms of blockage in your bladder and/or enlarged prostate may include difficulty passing urine and/or painful urination. If you have any of these symptoms, stop taking your medicine and call your doctor right away.

Dizziness and blurred vision may occur with SPIRIVA HandiHaler or SPIRIVA RESPIMAT. If you experience these symptoms, use caution when engaging in activities such as driving a car or operating appliances or other machines.

The most common side effects with SPIRIVA HandiHaler include upper respiratory tract infection, dry mouth, sinus infection, sore throat, non-specific chest pain, urinary tract infection, indigestion, runny nose, constipation, increased heart rate and blurred vision.

The most common side effects reported with SPIRIVA RESPIMAT include sore throat, cough, dry mouth and sinus infection.

Do not swallow SPIRIVA capsules. The contents of the capsule should only be inhaled through your mouth using the HandiHaler device. Do not use your HandiHaler device to take other medications.

Do not spray SPIRIVA RESPIMAT into your eyes as this may cause blurring of vision and pupil dilation.

INDICATIONS

Spiriva® HandiHaler® (tiotropium bromide inhalation powder) and SPIRIVA® RESPIMAT® (tiotropium bromide) Inhalation Spray are prescription medicines used once daily (maintenance medicines) to control symptoms of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) by relaxing your airways and keeping them open. COPD includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema.

SPIRIVA HandiHaler and SPIRIVA RESPIMAT also reduce the likelihood of flare-ups (COPD exacerbations).

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Please see full Prescribing Information for SPIRIVA RESPIMAT, including Instructions for Use, and full Prescribing Information for SPIRIVA HandiHaler, including Patient Information and Instructions for Use.

The information provided on this site is for general information and educational purposes only. You should always consult a doctor for diagnosing and treating a health or fitness problem, and before using any drug product discussed on this site.