Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Asthma Inhaler Alert for Peanut Allergy

I just received a rather disturbing e-mail alert written by an ER worker and felt the need to make us all aware of its contents. Apparently the asthma inhaler called Atrovent contains a peanut oil derivative. The nebulizer and nasal spray do not, but patients with peanut allergies should check with their physicians about avoiding all Atrovent meds.

According to the e-mail alert, ER patients who enter the hospital due to an asthma attack are routinely given both Albuterol and Atrovent, so if your child has asthma and a peanut allergy you will not want this given to them.

Here is a link that talks more about who should take Atrovent.

I would ask all of you to follow up with your doctors about this--I will do the same with mine. I'm not an allergist but I thought I would put this info out there since the last thing we want when our child is having an asthma attack is for them to be given peanut oil via the inhaler!

Also, it goes to show how important it is to communicate to all medical people who work on your child--including dentists--that they have a peanut allergy.

It's official: peanut products really are everywhere! Sigh.

I'll let you know what I find out and please feel free to chime in if you've heard anything about this product.


Unknown said...

It's 2:30 am and I can't sleep for some reason, so I am catching up on my reading. Your post re: peanut oil in an asthma inhaler...one word: YIPES! Is that scary! Thanks for this very helpful post.

mary beth teselle said...

Interesting - thanks so much for sharing this info. My peanut allergic daughter has actually been prescribed Atrovent for respiratory problems, but we have not used it yet. I am surprised her allergist (who prescribed it) would not be aware of this, so I plan on having a follow up conversation with him. Thanks!

Jenny said...

Yes, Mary Beth, check with your doctor because according to the alert I received the peanut ingredient is not even widely known among medical personnel.

Karen said...

This is an old entry, I know, but I wanted to ask you a question. I was going to write on your facebook wall but wanted to do a quick google search first, and what came up but this old entry from your blog! This is the situation - my daughter is peanut allergic and goes to daycare. One of the teachers there (not hers) has just been prescribed this inhaler and they contacted me to find out if it would be an issue because of my daughter's peanut allergy. As long as it is kept out of reach (which is a given anyways), do you think it would pose any risk, knowing it is not her teacher? Although she does have contact with her through the day, it is minimal contact and of course she would not be kissing her etc. Thanks!! Oh I should mention, her allergy is anaphylactic, she does have an epi-pen, but as far as we know she is not contact or airbourne allergic, so I believe she would actually need to ingest peanuts to react. Thank you!

Jenny said...

Hi Karen, You can check with your doctor but I would think the situation you describe would pose an extremely low risk. The main problem would be if an allergic child used one of these inhalers themselves. Also, I don't even know if these inhalers still contain peanut oil.

I think it will be OK but if you have lingering questions, I would ask the allergist. Best, Jenny

Lisa said...

This really sucks .. I have been reading that even PG products such as TIDE, Dreft etc.. the Perfun and Scents contain peanut oil. http://www.pgproductsafety.com/productsafety/ingredients/Perfume_and_Scents.pdf Page 17