Consumer medicine information


Terbutaline Sulfate

Consumer Medicine Information

What is in this leaflet

This leaflet answers some common questions asked about Bricanyl. It does not contain all the information that is known about Bricanyl.

It does not take the place of talking to your doctor or pharmacist.

All medicines have risks and benefits. Your doctor has weighed the risks of you taking Bricanyl against the benefits they expect it will have for you.

If you have any concerns about taking this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Keep this leaflet with the medicine. You may need to read it again.

What Bricanyl is used for

Bricanyl contains terbutaline sulfate. Terbutaline is a bronchodilator and belongs to a group of medicines called beta-2-agonists.

Bricanyl is used to open up the airways in people with asthma, bronchitis and other breathing problems so that they can breathe more easily. It can also be used before exercise to keep the airways open if you start to wheeze or have trouble breathing each time you exert yourself.

Bricanyl injection is usually only given in hospital in cases of severe breathing difficulties.

Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why Bricanyl has been prescribed for you. Your doctor may prescribe it for another reason.

Bricanyl is not addictive.

Bricanyl elixir and injection are available only with a doctor’s prescription.

Before you use Bricanyl

When you must not use it

Do not use Bricanyl if you have an allergy to:

  • any medicine containing terbutaline
  • any of the ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet

Some of the symptoms of an allergic reaction may include:

  • rash, itching or hives on the skin
  • shortness of breath, wheezing or difficulty breathing
  • swelling of the face, lips, tongue or other parts of the body

Do not use Bricanyl after the expiry date (EXP) printed on the pack or if the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering. If it has expired or is damaged, return it to your pharmacist for disposal.

If you are not sure whether you should start using this medicine, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Before you start to use it

Tell your doctor if you have allergies to any other medicines, foods, preservatives or dyes.

Tell your doctor if you have any of following medical conditions:

  • heart problems
  • hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • diabetes
  • thyroid problems

It may not be safe for you to take Bricanyl if you have any of these conditions.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, or breastfeeding. Your doctor will advise you of the risks and benefits of using Bricanyl during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.

If you have not told your doctor about any of the above, tell them before you start using Bricanyl.

Taking other medicines

Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are using any other medicines, including any that you buy without a prescription from your pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.

Some medicines and Bricanyl may interfere with each other. These include:

  • medicines used to treat heart problems or high blood pressure
  • medicines for glaucoma, including eye drops
  • medicines to treat asthma, bronchitis or breathing problems
  • some types of anaesthetics
  • injectable corticosteroids (medicines such as dexamethasone or methylprednisolone, which reduce the activity of your immune system) (Bricanyl injection only)

These medicines may be affected by Bricanyl, or may affect how well it works. You may need different amounts of your medicine, or you may need to use a different medicine. Your doctor or pharmacist will advise you.

Your doctor and pharmacist may have more information on medicines to be careful with or avoid while using Bricanyl.

How to use Bricanyl

How much to take

Bricanyl Elixir

The dose can range from 10 to 15 mL (3 to 4.5 mg), up to three times a day.

Children are usually considered to be aged 12 years or less, but check with your doctor if you are at all worried about the dose that has been prescribed for your child.

The dose is worked out by the weight of the child. It is 0.25 mL (0.075 mg) for every kilogram the child weighs for each dose. Doses are given when needed up to every 8 hours. The maximum dose is 15 mL three times daily.

Bricanyl Injection

Your doctor or a specially trained nurse will give you the injection. It will be given just under the skin, and repeated when needed, up to every 6 hours.

If you forget to use it

If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take your next dose when you are meant to.

Otherwise, use it as soon as you remember, and then go back to taking your medicine as you would normally.

Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose that you missed. This may increase the chance of you getting an unwanted side effect.

If you are not sure what to do, ask your doctor or pharmacist. If you have trouble remembering to take your medicine, ask your pharmacist for some hints.

Bricanyl injection will be given to you when required so you will not ‘miss’ a dose.

If you take too much (overdose)

Immediately telephone your doctor or the Poisons Information Centre (13 11 26), or go to Accident and Emergency at your nearest hospital, if you think that you or anyone else may have taken too much Bricanyl. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning. You may need urgent medical attention.

If you take too much Bricanyl you may experience shaky hands (tremor), headaches, feel sick (nausea), anxious, tense, restless, excited and be unable to sleep, muscle twitching or cramps, or fast or irregular heartbeats.

While you are using Bricanyl

Things you must do

Follow all directions given to you by your doctor or pharmacist carefully. They may differ from the information contained in this leaflet.

If you have an Asthma Action Plan that you have agreed with your doctor, follow it closely at all times.

If you find that the usual dose of Bricanyl is not giving you as much relief as before, or you are needing to use it more often, please contact your doctor so that your condition can be checked.

This is important to ensure your breathing problem is controlled properly.

See your doctor regularly to ensure that your asthma is not getting worse.

Tell any other doctors, dentists and pharmacists who are treating you that you are using Bricanyl.

If you are about to be started on a new medicine, tell your doctor or pharmacist that you are using Bricanyl.

If you become pregnant while using Bricanyl, tell your doctor or pharmacist.

Things you must not do

Do not use Bricanyl to treat any other complaints unless your doctor tells you to.

Do not give Bricanyl to anyone else, even if they have the same condition as you.

Side effects

Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are using Bricanyl.

All medicines can have side effects. Sometimes they are serious, most of the time they are not. You may need medical treatment if you get some of the side effects.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist to answer any questions you may have.

Tell your doctor if you notice any of the following and they worry you:

  • headache
  • tremor (shaky hands)
  • nervousness
  • increased heart rate or palpitations
  • nausea (feeling sick), vomiting or diarrhoea
  • a bad taste in your mouth
  • sweating, muscle twitching or cramps
  • drowsiness or dizziness
  • agitation, restlessness, hyperactivity, or disturbed sleep
  • skin rash

These side effects are usually mild.

Tell your doctor or pharmacist immediately if you notice any of the following:

  • fast or irregular heart beat
  • chest pain
  • difficulty breathing or worsening of your breathing problem

These may be serious side effects. You may need urgent medical attention. Serious side effects are rare.

Do not be alarmed by this list of possible side effects. You may not experience any of them.

Tell your doctor if you notice anything else that is making you feel unwell.

Other side effects not listed above may occur in some patients.


Keep your Bricanyl elixir in a cool dry place where the temperature stays below 30°C.

Keep the Bricanyl elixir in its bottle until it is time to take it.

Keep Bricanyl injection protected from light in a cool dry place where the temperature stays below 25°C.

Do not store Bricanyl or any other medicine in the bathroom or near a sink.

Do not leave it in the car on hot days or on window sills. Heat and dampness can destroy some medicines.

Keep it where young children cannot reach it. A locked cupboard at least one-and-a-half metres above the ground is a good place to store medicines.


If your doctor tells you to stop using Bricanyl, or it has passed its expiry date, ask your pharmacist what to do with any Bricanyl you have left over.

Product description

Bricanyl elixir is a colourless, clear liquid containing 0.3 mg/mL of terbutaline sulfate and the following inactive ingredients:

  • sorbitol (E 420)
  • glycerol (E 422)
  • citric acid monohydrate
  • sodium hydroxide
  • sodium benzoate (E 211)
  • disodium edetate
  • ethanol (E 1510)
  • raspberry flavour
  • purified water

Bricanyl elixir is available in 300 mL bottles.

Bricanyl injection contains 0.5 mg/mL of terbutaline sulfate and the following inactive ingredients:

  • sodium chloride
  • hydrochloric acid (for pH adjustment)
  • water for Injections

Bricanyl injection is available in 1 mL ampoules in boxes of 5.


AstraZeneca Pty Ltd
ABN 54 009 682 311
Alma Road
North Ryde, NSW, 2113

This leaflet was prepared 29 October 2015.

Australian Registration Numbers
Bricanyl Elixir – AUST R 12067
Bricanyl Injection – AUST R 12068

Bricanyl is a registered trade mark of the AstraZeneca group of companies.

© AstraZeneca, 2015

Doc ID-001913461 v3

Published by MIMS October 2016