Treatments in Respiratory Medicine

, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 123–127

Comparison of the Bronchodilating Effects of Formoterol and Albuterol Delivered by Hydrofluoroalkane Pressurized Metered-Dose Inhaler

  • Jaro Ankerst
  • Jan Lötvall
  • Sarah Cassidy
  • Nicola Byrne
Original Research Article

DOI: 10.2165/00151829-200504020-00006

Cite this article as:
Ankerst, J., Lötvall, J., Cassidy, S. et al. Treat Respir Med (2005) 4: 123. doi:10.2165/00151829-200504020-00006



To compare the onset of bronchodilation with a new formoterol hydrofluoroalkane (HFA) pressurized metered-dose inhaler (pMDI) with albuterol (salbutamol) HFA pMDI.

Patients and methods

Thirty patients with stable mild or moderate asthma (23 using inhaled corticosteroids, mean FEV1 82% of predicted, ≥15% reversibility to terbutaline 1mg after 30 minutes) received formoterol HFA (Oxis®) 2 × 4.5µg, albuterol HFA (Ventoline® Evohaler®) 2 × l00µg, or placebo at three separate visits in this randomized, double-blind, double-dummy, three-way crossover study. FEV1 was measured before and 3, 10, 20, 30 and 60 minutes after inhalation. Change in FEV1 at 3 minutes after inhalation was the primary variable.


Mean baseline FEV1 was stable on all study days (range 2.92–2.94L). FEV1 values at 3 minutes were: formoterol 3.22L (8% increase), albuterol 3.23L (9% increase) and placebo 2.99L (both p < 0.001 vs placebo). Maximum FEV1 increased similarly with formoterol and albuterol, with no differences observed between the active treatments at any time point. Patients rated treatment effective at 3 minutes in 15 of 30, 19 of 30 and 7 of 30 cases with formoterol, albuterol and placebo, respectively. All treatments were well tolerated.


In stable, mild, or moderate asthma, formoterol 9µg and albuterol 200µg, both by HFA pMDI, provided equally rapid and effective bronchodilation.

Copyright information

© Adis Data Information BV 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jaro Ankerst
    • 1
  • Jan Lötvall
    • 2
  • Sarah Cassidy
    • 3
  • Nicola Byrne
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of MedicineUniversity Hospital LundLundSweden
  2. 2.Department of Respiratory Medicine and Allergology, The Lung Pharmacology GroupUniversity of GöteborgGöteborgSweden
  3. 3.AstraZeneca R&DCharnwoodUK
  4. 4.Department of Medicine, Heart-Lung DivisionUniversity Hospital LundLundSweden