Unboxing Next Gen: Advair Asthma Inhaler

Anil Dash got an exclusive preview of the GlaxoSmithKlein's new Advair Inhaler and filmed this breathtaking unboxing video.
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24 Responses to Unboxing Next Gen: Advair Asthma Inhaler

  1. muteboy says:

    My salmeterol comes in a green one of these. I opened up an empty one to find out how it worked. There’s a roll of metal tape with a row of little plastic bubbles with the drug powder. The metal foil is pierced, allowing the powder to be sucked out.

    The innards were really elaborate, with cogs and gears to set a 60-0 counter. I wish they could just sell the rolls of tape with the drugs, instead of the whole machine. I used to wish they would sell just the aerosol can instead of the plastic casing too.

    Someone with a Dremel and skill could probably turn one of these into an earbud case or something.

  2. tsdguy says:

    Anybody remember the older Spinhalers? I used them about 30 years ago to inhale Cromylin Sodium. You would stick a little capsule (same size as the swallowing kind) into a little gadget. Closing it punctured the capsule and then when you inhaled a little fan would spin and blow the powder into your lungs.

    Like sucking on a dust buster…

    BTW: There is a competing product that combines a long term dilator (like salbuterol) and a steroid) but comes in a standard pressured inhaler.

  3. Tensegrity says:

    New? I thought this has been on the market for quite some time. Or was this post supposed to be satirical?

  4. Scary_UK says:

    #19 – sounds a bit like a device I had as a kid called a Rotahaler. .

    The problem was that you had to empty out the dead capsules every so often and that usually meant tipping them out into the case. Many a time I almost inhaled half an empty capsule because it had strayed into the mouthpiece

  5. tsdguy says:

    Huh? You’ve got to be kidding? I’ve been using the UFO inhaler for about 4 years.

    Very interesting if you pull it apart. Amazing asthma control – completely eliminated my unstable asthma.

    Just wish it wasn’t so expensive – $40 per month with insurance.

  6. infestacool says:

    My Grandma has been using that thing for years.

    Here’s a tip ask your doctor for samples. They have a ton of them and they are the full size inhalers. She didn’t have to pay for a few years because they would just give her lots of samples.

  7. zuzu says:

    Yup, I’m not sure the exact mechanics of it all, but the doses are stored within the discus in pill form, and then when you ratchet the disk it loads a new pill then the rotation crushes the pill into an inhalation powder.

    So, it’s a fancy medical bumper bullet?

  8. haineux says:

    World’s Best Product Unboxing video. The commentary makes it great.


    iPhone, schmiPhone.

  9. Amplifier says:


  10. zuzu says:

    (setting aside that insufflation != inhalation)

  11. ryuthrowsstuff says:

    Yeah these have been around years. As I understand it the form factor exists because Advair is a powder not a liquid.

  12. Tommy says:

    The costs sucks, but it beats not breathing.

  13. Joel Johnson says:

    *wink* *wink*

  14. dculberson says:

    haineux has it. That’s awesome.

  15. Dapremonster says:

    *nudge* *nudge*

  16. KurtMac says:

    @#3 RYUTHROW: Yup, I’m not sure the exact mechanics of it all, but the doses are stored within the discus in pill form, and then when you ratchet the disk it loads a new pill then the rotation crushes the pill into an inhalation powder.

    These are the things you learn when your mom is a respiratory therapist at a hospital.

  17. Random_Tangent says:

    I used one of those when I lived on-campus in college. Never had asthma, but damn did my lungs hurt living in there.

    Taking a hit of delicious Advair powder kept me breathing as I tried fighting the bureaucracy to let me move off campus to a house with less particulates in the air. I lost.

    Thanks, pharmaceuticals!

  18. Tenn says:

    Oh, Advair, how I loathed thee. Lessened my attacks, but made them damn-near-deadly when they did appear. Stopped taking them way before the news about the side-effects being worse than originally stated started to break.

  19. OM says:

    …So, how soon before some MAKE enthusiast retrofits one of these to deliver coke in metered doses? :-P

  20. Anonymous says:

    ‘an exclusive preview’??? Seriously? I’ve been using this for the last few years. I was hoping this was a Diskus 2.0 video. So disappointing.

  21. kaiza says:

    There’s also the more compact Turbuhaler, which works on a similar principal at the UFO:


    And Haineaux, that is gold.

  22. DSMVWL THS says:

    Not new in the slightest. My daughter has used one of these for about 4 years.

    I’m not sure if Joel posted this as a joke, or if Anil Dash did. I wasn’t even aware of “unboxing videos” as a genre. Consumer product fetishism is a strange thing.

  23. ffaat says:

    @Kurtmac – I pulled an expired one apart. The medicine is in a powder stored in bubbles on the tape, not pills. Ratcheting the next just peels back the cover tape and exposes the next bubble.

    -Rob A>

  24. Maxon says:

    @3 RyuThrowStuff:

    Advair is also available in a standard aerosol canister. I’ve used both the diskus and the aerosol. I’m using an aerosol right now (HFA propellant, gotta save the ozone!)

    Most doctors prescribe the diskus. This may be due to the fact that you need 2 puffs from the aerosol to equal 1 puff from the diskus, so it’s slightly more convenient. Or it could be a conspiracy by Glaxo sales reps ;)

    The diskus is hard to use for people with severe COPD who can’t move air well, since you need to be able to breathe in pretty quickly to get the powder air-borne. The aerosol is a better choice for them, although these people probably need to be on breathing treatments, so it may not be that important in the real world.

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