Bioavailability of beclometasone from two hfa-bdp formulations with a spacer

Amira S.A. Said, Salahdein Aburuz, Henry Chrystyn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: The drug delivery characteristics of each inhaler/spacer combination are unique. The spacer size as well as the presence of electrostatic charge greatly influence the inhaler dose emission and in vivo delivery. Using a previously developed urinary pharmacokinetic method, we have measured the relative lung and systemic bioavailability of beclometasone dipropionate (BDP) after inhalation from 2 hydrofluroalkane-beclometasone dipropionate (HFA-BDP) formulations when used with a spacer. METHODS: 12 healthy volunteers received 8 randomized doses, separated by 7 d, of inhaled of BDP with either the Clenil pressurized metered-dose inhaler (pMDI; 250 μg) or the breath-actuated Qvar Easi-Breathe inhaler (100 μg), used alone or with a spacer. The urinary amounts of BDP excreted and retained in the spacer were assayed using a liquid chromatographic mass spectrometer. The spacer was assessed after washing with a detergent solution that was either rinsed or not rinsed with water. In addition, the aerodynamic characterization of each inhaler/spacer combination was assessed using the Andersen Cascade Impactor operated at 28 L/min using a 4-L inhalation volume. The amount of BDP deposited in the induction port, spacer, and various Anderson Cascade Impactor stages were determined. RESULTS: The in vivo 30-min urinary excretion and the in vitro fine particle dose results were only slightly affected by adding the spacer to the Clenil pMDI or the Qvar Easi-Breathe inhaler. However, the spacer significantly reduced drug particle impaction in the oropharynx and minimized deposition in the gastrointestinal tract. Therefore, using spacers with BDP inhalers is associated with a more favorable therapeutic ratio because it has little effect on lung dose, but it significantly reduced throat deposition. An improved lung deposition was achieved with non-rinsed spacers compared to spacers rinsed with water. CONCLUSION: The difference in the BDP particle size between formulations as well as spacer size greatly affected drug deposition in different regions of the respiratory tract.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1222-1230
Number of pages9
JournalRespiratory Care
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Beclometasone dipropionate
  • Inhalation
  • Relative lung bioavailability
  • Spacers
  • Urinary excretion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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