Your provider may have prescribed your asthma medicine to be administered using a hand-held device called a dry powder inhaler (DPI). Here's how to use your Diskus® brand inhaler.
Some asthma medications can be taken in the form of a dry powder using a small, hand-held device called a dry powder inhaler (DPI). DPIs deliver medication to the lungs as you inhale through the device. The DPI doesn’t push the medication into your lungs. You have to breathe in strong and steady to get the medicine.
The Diskus® (Figure 1) contains 60 doses of medication (brand names are Advair®, Flovent®, or Serevent®). It has a dose counter that automatically counts down the number of doses as you use them. Doses 5 through 0 are in red to alert you to refill your prescription.
When the counter reads “0”, there is no medicine left in the Diskus. Throw away the empty Diskus and begin using a new one.
Unlike other inhaled medications, you may not taste or feel the dry powder or there may be a slightly sweet taste. This experience may be different from what you're used to. As long as you follow the directions, you'll get your full dose of medication.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 12/21/2020.
Learn more about our editorial process.