Budesonide Nasal Spray

What is this medication?

BUDESONIDE (bue DES oh nide) treats allergy symptoms such as sneezing, itching, and runny or stuffy nose. It works by decreasing inflammation in your nose, making it easier to breathe. It belongs to a group of medications called nasal steroids.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Rhinocort, Rhinocort Aqua, Rhinocort Children's Allergy


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What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • Glaucoma
  • Infection, like tuberculosis, herpes, or fungal infection
  • Liver disease
  • Recent surgery or injury of nose or sinuses
  • Taking corticosteroids by mouth
  • An unusual or allergic reaction to budesonide, other steroids, or any other food or medication, sulfites, dyes, or preservatives
  • Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • Breast-feeding

How should I use this medication?

This medication is for use in the nose. Follow the directions on your prescription label. This medication works the best if used regularly. Do not use more often than directed.

Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed. This medication has been used in children as young as 6 years of age.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.


What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, use only that dose and continue with your regular schedule. Do not use double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medication?

  • Certain antibiotics such as clarithromycin, erythromycin, and telithromycin
  • Certain antivirals for HIV or hepatitis
  • Certain medications for fungal infections such as itraconazole and ketoconazole
  • Nefazodone

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.


What should I watch for while using this medication?

Visit your health care provider for regular checks on your progress. Check with your health care provider if your symptoms do not improve in 2 weeks of regular use or if they get worse.

Do not come in contact with people who have chickenpox or the measles while you are taking this medication. If you do, call your health care provider right away.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?

Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:

  • Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Crusting or sores inside nose
  • Frequent or severe nose bleeds
  • Low adrenal gland function—nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, unusual weakness, fatigue, dizziness
  • Thrush—white patches in the nose and mouth
  • Whistling through one or both nostrils that does not go away

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):

  • Change in sense of smell
  • Change in taste
  • Cough
  • Headache
  • Irritation inside the nose or throat

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Where should I keep my medication?

Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

Store at room temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F) in an upright position. Do not freeze. Get rid of the canister after 120 sprays or after the expiration date, whichever comes first.

To get rid of medications that are no longer needed or have expired:

  • Take the medication to a medication take-back program. Check with your pharmacy or law enforcement to find a location.
  • If you cannot return the medication, ask your pharmacist or care team how to get rid of this medication safely.

NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

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Note: Introduction and Additional Common Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.

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