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Common patient questions

Providing simple answers to questions often asked by patients on Nucala.

About their severe eosinophilic asthma

  • Research has shown that not all asthma is the same, and one of the ways it can vary is in its severity.

    In general, patients with ‘severe’ asthma find it difficult to control their daily asthma symptoms. Severe asthma patients may continue to have asthma attacks, even when they are taking high doses of prescribed asthma medications.1 Around 5–10% of people with asthma have this type. 2

    Some of these people, like you, have a particular type of severe asthma known as severe eosinophilic asthma.

    Learn more about how severe eosinophilic asthma is characterised

  • Eosinophils are a type of white blood cell found throughout your body. They play an important role in your immune system. 3In eosinophilic asthma, eosinophils are involved in inflammation in the lungs and may worsen the condition. 1

    Learn more about eosinophils and their role in inflammation  

  • It’s normal if you feel worried about your condition. Severe asthma can be unpredictable. Asthma attacks are frightening and may require you to go urgently to the hospital or doctor’s clinic.

    It’s also normal to have some concerns when starting a different medication. Your Nucala treatment has to be injected, and requires that you make appointments with your doctor every 4 weeks. 4You may also be concerned about how you are going to pay for the treatment. Discussing your concerns with a friend, family member or doctor may really help you put things into perspective.

    Learn more about dedicated supporters for patients


About their Nucala treatment

  • Clinical studies have found that for many adult patients with severe refractory eosinophilic asthma who are eligible for treatment, Nucala significantly reduced the frequency of asthma attacks. 5 Although, remember, this doesn’t mean that it will stop them altogether.

    Furthermore, for those patients taking oral corticosteroids daily to control their asthma symptoms and attacks, Nucala also helped to reduce their daily dose. 6

    Learn more about how Nucala can benefit your adult patients with severe refractory eosinophilic asthma

  • Nucala mainly works by reducing the frequency of attacks in adult patients with severe refractory eosinophilic asthma. 5Since these don’t normally happen on a daily basis, it might take a while to know if the medication is working. Therefore, it is important to track your progress, for example using an asthma tracker diary or app. Nucala could also improve asthma symptoms (such as shortness of breath) which can be recognised earlier. 5

  • When your doctor advises you to. If Nucala is working, you are less likely to have a severe asthma attack than if you were not receiving it. 5The risk does not disappear altogether, so you should keep receiving Nucala as prescribed whether or not you are still experiencing asthma symptoms or severe asthma attacks.


About their treatment regimen


About concomitant treatments

  • Nucala is an add-on treatment, 4which means that you should continue to take all of your other asthma medications as prescribed by your doctor.

  • You should not stop your oral corticosteroid treatment unless told to. The main thing to remember is that you shouldn’t suddenly stop taking any prescribed medication without consulting your doctor. You will be advised on whether you can reduce your oral corticosteroid dose after you start taking Nucala. This decision will be based on if, and how, you are responding to Nucala.


About Nucala safety

  • The most common side effect seen in clinical trials with Nucala (affecting more than 10% of patients) was headache. Other side effects that might affect up to 10% of patients included: 4

    • Injection-site reactions (pain, redness, swelling, itching and burning sensation of the skin near to the injection site)
    • Back pain
    • Pharyngitis (sore throat)
    • Lower respiratory tract infection (congestion, cough)
    • Hypersensitivity reactions
    • Nasal congestion (stuffy nose)
    • Upper abdominal pain (stomach pain or discomfort in the upper area of the stomach)
    • Eczema (red itchy patches on the skin)
    • Urinary tract infection (blood in urine, painful and frequent urination, fever, pain in lower back)
    • Fever (high temperature)

    For further information on side effects, please see the patient information leaflet that comes with your medicine.

    Learn more about the safety profile of Nucala

  • Allergic or allergic-like reactions may affect up to 1 in 10 people. 4They usually occur within minutes to hours after the injection, but sometimes they may start several days later. Symptoms can include:

    • Chest tightness, cough, difficulty breathing
    • Fainting, dizziness, feeling lightheaded (due to a drop in blood pressure)
    • Swelling of the eyelids, face, lips, tongue or mouth
    • Hives
    • Rash

    If you think you may be having a reaction, seek medical attention immediately. And if you think you may have had a similar reaction to any injection or medicine before, tell your doctor before you are given Nucala.

    Learn more about the safety profile of Nucala

  • Clinical trials involving pregnant women have yet to be conducted. Individuals who are pregnant, breast-feeding or planning to become pregnant should discuss this with their healthcare professional before starting treatment with Nucala. 4

    Learn more about the safety profile of Nucala


  1. Chung KF et al. Eur Respir J 2014;43:343–373.
  2. Moore WC et al. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2007;119:405–413. 
  3. Garcia G et al. Eur Respir Rev 2013; 22:251–257.
  4. Nucala SmPC, 2016.
  5. Ortega HG et al. N Engl J Med 2014; 36:1198–1207.
  6. Bel EH et al. N Engl J Med 2014; 371:1189–1197.

Nucala is a registered trade mark of the GlaxoSmithKline group of companies