Evid Based Nurs 8:106 doi:10.1136/ebn.8.4.106
  • Treatment

Review: various devices for delivery of aerosol treatment can be equally efficacious

 Q What are the relative efficacies and harms associated with various devices for delivery of aerosol treatment?


GraphicData sources:

Medline, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, and Cochrane Library.

GraphicStudy selection and assessment:

English language randomised controlled trials in which the same drug was administered using different devices. Studies comparing devices of the same type or comparing oral or parenteral treatment with aerosol treatment were excluded.


included forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) and symptoms/physical findings.


59 trials met the selection criteria, most of which tested β2 agonists. Types of devices studied included nebulisers (intermittent and continuous), metered dose inhalers (MDIs) with or without spacers or holding chambers, and dry powder inhalers (DPIs). The results of the meta-analyses are summarised in …