CFCs, HFAs and the Earth’s Ozone Layer
Right now, many inhalers use chemicals called CFCs, which stands for chlorofluorocarbons, to push the medicine out of the inhaler. But CFCs are bad for the environment because they destroy the ozone layer. The ozone layer around the Earth protects us from harmful radiation. Another chemical, HFA, or hydrofluoroalkane, also can propel medicine from an inhaler, and HFAs don’t hurt the Earth’s ozone layer. By the end of 2008, all inhalers must use HFA.
You may notice some differences between your old and new inhaler. But don’t worry. The medicine in your new inhaler is the same as the old one. It opens your airways when you have trouble breathing, just like before. Your allergist can help you find the right inhaler, let you know what to expect from the new HFA inhalers, and work with you to help you control symptoms.