Serevent Diskus® (salmeterol xinafoate)

Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last updated: March 2023

Serevent Diskus ® (salmeterol xinafoate) is a long-acting beta2-adrenoceptor agonist (LABA) bronchodilator. It is indicated to prevent asthma attacks or exercise-induced bronchospasms by helping the muscles around the airways in the lungs stay relaxed.1-3

Serevent Diskus is an inhaler. It is part of a preventive treatment regimen for bronchial asthma. It is not indicated for the relief of an acute asthma attack. Serevent Diskus must be used in combination with other medications such as an inhaled corticosteroid for long-term asthma control.1-3

Salmeterol xinafoate is made by GlaxoSmithKline in the US.1,2

How does Serevent Diskus work?

Serevent Diskus is a preventive drug. It is not a rescue inhaler and does not provide immediate relief of acute symptoms. Serevent Diskus can reduce airway inflammation. It helps the muscles around the airways in the lungs relax, preventing the development of asthma symptoms including wheezing, coughing, tightness in the chest, and shortness of breath.1-3

It should be used only if asthma is not well controlled with another long-term asthma control medicine. Your doctor may also prescribe short-acting bronchodilators, like albuterol, for emergency relief of an acute asthma attack.1-3

What is the active ingredient in Serevent Diskus?

The active ingredient in Serevent Diskus is salmeterol xinafoate.1-3

What are some of the possible side effects of Serevent Diskus?

The most common side effects of Serevent Diskus include:1-3

  • Headache
  • Flu symptoms
  • Sore throat, cough, runny or stuffy nose
  • Joint or muscle pain

Serevent Diskus can cause rare but serious side effects, including:1-3

  • Increased risk of asthma-related hospitalization in children and teenagers
  • Severe headaches
  • Worsening asthma and difficulty breathing
  • Blurry vision
  • Pounding in the neck or ears
  • Serious allergic reactions including rash, swelling of the mouth, tongue, and face
  • Chest pain, fast or irregular heartbeats
  • Tremors or nervousness
  • High blood sugar increased thirst, urination, dry mouth, or fruity breath odor
  • Low potassium levels causing leg cramps, constipation, or muscle weakness

These are not all the possible side effects of Serevent Diskus. Talk to your doctor about what to expect or if you experience any changes that concern you during treatment with Serevent Diskus.

Things to know

Before starting Serevent Diskus, you should talk to your doctor about all drugs (prescription and over the counter), supplements, and vitamins you are taking. Some drugs or supplements may interfere with each other. This means both drugs may work less well, or you may have serious side effects. In particular, salmeterol xinafoate may interact with certain other drugs including:1-3

  • Similar inhaled bronchodilators, especially other LABA drugs
  • Antifungals
  • Antibiotics
  • Anti-HIV drugs
  • Heart or blood pressure medicine
  • MAO inhibitors and tricyclic antidepressants

Before starting treatment with salmeterol xinafoate, discuss all of your health conditions with your doctor, especially:1-3

  • Hypersensitivity to salmeterol xinafoate
  • Food or drug allergies
  • Allergy to milk proteins
  • Liver problems
  • Thyroid disorder
  • Diabetes
  • Epilepsy or other seizure disorder
  • Heart disease or high blood pressure

Serevent is indicated for adults and children 4 years old and older. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant or breastfeed while using Serevent Diskus.1-3Black box warning: The active ingredient in Serevent Diskus, salmeterol xinafoate, may increase the risk of asthma-related death. See prescribing information to learn more.

Dosing information

Be sure to talk to your doctor if you have any questions about your drugs or your inhalation regimen.1-3

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