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Fluticasone nasal spray

Dr Karen Martin
Reviewed by Dr Karen MartinReviewed on 19.10.2023 | 2 minutes read
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Fluticasone is a type of medicine known as a corticosteroid. Fluticasone nasal spray is available over-the-counter. It can prevent and treat the symptoms of hay fever and other airborne allergies, such as animal and dust allergies. It helps with sneezing, congestion, an itchy or runny nose, sinus discomfort, and red, itchy, or watery eyes. Flonase is a branded version of the medicine.

Doctor’s advice

How does it work?

Fluticasone works by reducing inflammation in the nasal passages, the root cause of hay fever and other airborne allergy symptoms. It does this because fluticasone is a manufactured version of a corticosteroid, a hormone that is produced naturally in our bodies. By having the same structure as corticosteroids in our bodies, it causes the same effect, in this case, reducing inflammation.

How do I use the medication?

Initially, you should use two sprays into each nostril once a day, usually in the morning. Some products recommend using two sprays into each nostril twice a day if your symptoms are not under control. Try to use the lowest dose possible to control your symptoms. Fluticasone can take three to four days to achieve its maximum effect, so it is best to use it regularly each day so you can prevent your symptoms before they occur.

You should speak with your doctor or pharmacist before using the medicine for longer than a month or if your symptoms do not start to improve after seven days of use.

Who should not use the medication?

Do not use fluticasone nasal spray if you are allergic to fluticasone or another ingredient listed in the medicine. Unless under the guidance of a doctor, anyone under 4 years should not use the medication. Children’s formulations are available.

Speak with your doctor or pharmacist before using fluticasone nasal spray if you are pregnant or breastfeeding or have any problems with your nose, such as an injury, infection, ulcers, or recent surgery.

Fluticasone can interact with other medications, such as HIV medications and other corticosteroids. If you take any prescription, over-the-counter or herbal medicines, ask your doctor or pharmacist to check if they are safe to take alongside fluticasone nasal spray.

Are there any side effects?

As with all medications, some people may experience side effects. Some common ones can include nose bleeds, headache, experiencing an unpleasant smell or taste, and irritation or drying in your nose or throat. Seek urgent medical advice if you develop any problems with your eyes, such as blurred vision, cloudy vision, or loss of vision. You should speak with your doctor or pharmacist if you are concerned about any side effects.

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This article has been written by UK-based doctors and pharmacists, so some advice may not apply to US users and some suggested treatments may not be available. For more information, please see our T&Cs.
Dr Karen Martin
Reviewed by Dr Karen Martin
Reviewed on 19.10.2023
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