Xopenex HFA (levalbuterol tartrate)

Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last reviewed: May 2023

Xopenex HFA® (levalbuterol tartrate) is a rescue bronchodilator treatment for the quick relief of symptoms. It is an oral inhalation medicine used to treat or prevent a narrowing of the airways (bronchospasm) in people with reversible airway disease.1,2

Xopenex is part of a class of drugs called inhaled beta-agonists. Rescue inhalers should be used for symptoms that are very severe and need relief very quickly.2

What are the ingredients in Xopenex HFA?

The active ingredient in Xopenex HFA is levalbuterol tartrate.1,2

How does Xopenex HFA work?

Xopenex HFA helps to treat symptoms by relaxing the tightened muscles around airway passages. This relieves symptoms like:1,2

  • Wheezing
  • Coughing
  • Chest tightness
  • Shortness of breath

What are the possible side effects?

The most common side effects in children ages 4 to 11 include:1,2

  • Vomiting
  • Sore throat
  • Bronchitis
  • Accidental injury

The most common side effects in those ages 12 and over side include:1,2

  • Pain
  • Dizziness
  • Asthma
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose, sneezing, and stuffiness

Xopenex HFA may also cause serious side effects, including:1,2

  • Sudden shortness of breath
  • Heart problems
  • Allergic reactions
  • Low potassium levels

If your breathing problems quickly worsen after taking Xopenex HFA, contact 9-1-1 right away.

These are not all the possible side effects of Xopenex HFA. Talk to your doctor about what to expect when taking Xopenex HFA. You also should call your doctor if you have any changes that concern you when taking Xopenex HFA.

Things to know about Xopenex HFA

Before taking Xopenex HFA, tell your doctor if you have:1,2

  • Heart problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Seizures
  • Diabetes
  • Thyroid problems

The need for more doses of Xopenex may be a sign that your lung condition is getting worse. This requires evaluation by a doctor. Beta-adrenergic agonists alone may not be enough to control asthma or COPD. Anti-inflammatory drugs may be needed. Xopenex HFA is not a substitution for corticosteroids.2

Xopenex HFA may interact with other medicines. Before beginning treatment for COPD, tell your doctor about all your health conditions and any other drugs, vitamins, or supplements you are taking. This includes over-the-counter drugs.

For more information, read the full prescribing information of Xopenex HFA.

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