Reservoir design and dose availability with long-term metered dose inhaler corticosteroid use

J Aerosol Med. 1998 Spring;11(1):15-26. doi: 10.1089/jam.1998.11.15.


The effect of reservoir design and long-term use with inhaled metered dose inhaler (MDI) corticosteroids on aerosol dose availability was examined. Beclomethasone dipropionate (Vanceril) was delivered by MDI with three brands of available reservoir devices: the AeroChamber, the OptiHaler, and the Aerosol Cloud Enhancer (ACE). An in vitro lung model simulated inspiration. Long-term use was simulated by exhausting five MDI canisters of beclomethasone through each sample of reservoir tested. Each canister exhausted through a reservoir represented approximately 1 month of use with one drug. Total inhaled dose was collected at the reservoir mouthpiece and measured using a spectrophotometric assay. Dose delivery was measured before simulated use and after each MDI canister was exhausted through the reservoir. Three samples of each brand were tested with cleaning and three samples were tested without cleaning. With cleaning, the AeroChamber, OptiHaler, and ACE delivered significantly different average doses of 16.6, 10.3, and 8.7 micrograms per MDI actuation, respectively, (P = 0.0017) over time of use. Changes in dose delivery over time of use were not significant (P = 0.2011). Without cleaning, the same three brands averaged 21.1, 9.7, and 7.8 micrograms per MDI actuation, respectively, (P = 0.0019), and changes in dose delivery over time were not significant (P = 0.3265). Reservoir design can affect the delivery of an inhaled corticosteroid, although the delivery over 4 to 5 months remained stable.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Inhalation
  • Aerosols / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Beclomethasone / administration & dosage*
  • Drug Delivery Systems / instrumentation
  • Drug Delivery Systems / standards
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Nebulizers and Vaporizers*


  • Aerosols
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Beclomethasone