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A nebulizer is a tool that delivers liquid medicine as a fine mist. You breathe in the medicine through a mouthpiece or face mask. This sends the medicine directly to your airways and lungs.
Depending on your needs, you can get a small, portable nebulizer or one that sits on a table or counter. A portable unit can run on rechargeable batteries or plug into a car or wall electrical outlet. A tabletop unit plugs into a wall outlet.
All nebulizers have parts that need to be washed and air-dried each time you use them.
A nebulizer may be used to treat breathing problems. These include asthma and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).
A nebulizer can make inhaling medicines easier. It can be very helpful if it is hard for you to breathe or to use an inhaler.
Follow the directions for use and cleaning that come with your nebulizer. For a tabletop unit:
After each use, clean the mouthpiece or face mask with warm, soapy water. Let it air dry. After every few uses, follow the product directions to disinfect the parts.
July 23, 2013
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
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