Are There Any Generic Asthma Inhalers?

The available "rescue" inhalers available for the treatment of acute asthma symptoms. From left to right, ProAir HFA (albuterol), Proventil HFA (albuterol), Ventolin HFA (albuterol) and Xopenex HFA (levalbuterol). © Daniel More, MD

Unfortunately, no. There are currently no generic asthma inhalers, either as rescue or controller medications. Since the transition to HFA-based propellant inhalers, generic albuterol is no longer available. Albuterol is now only available in multiple brand name versions, including Proventil, ProAir, Ventolin, and Xopenex (levalbuterol, which is the active form of albuterol).

Controller inhalers for asthma, which are used to prevent symptoms of asthma, are also only available in brand name versions.

There are a number of inhaled steroids available for this purpose, including Flovent, Asmanex, QVAR, Alvesco, and Pulmicort. Inhalers that combine inhaled steroids and long-acting bronchodilators, such as Advair, Symbicort and Dulera, are also only available in brand name form.

Nebulizer solutions for asthma, as both rescue and controller therapies, are available in generic versions. Albuterol nebulizer solution is available only as a generic medication. Budesonide is the generic version of Pulmicort Respules, an inhaled steroid used as a controller therapy for the treatment of asthma. Budesonide is available as a generic nebulizer steroid solution, as well as in brand name form.

Learn about the differences between brands of inhaled steroids used to prevent the symptoms of asthma.


Practice Parameters for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Asthma. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1995;96:S707-870.

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