Tiotropium vs Ipratropium: What’s the Difference?

There are many different medicines that we need for the different breathing issues that we may come across in our daily lives.

One of them is called Tiotropium Bromide and it’s a medication that is used to manage COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases).

Many people mistakenly think that Tiotropium and Ipratropium are the same medication, but they’re actually different medications that target different symptoms.

So what kind of medication is Tiotropium vs Ipratropium? Let’s talk about what kind of medication Tiotropium is and how to get it.

What is Tiotropium?

Tiotropium is a bronchodilator, an inhaled medication that relaxes muscles in the airways to treat breathing problems like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) , and other respiratory illnesses.

It belongs to a class of drugs called anticholinergics which work by inhibiting the actions of the chemicals which trigger muscles in the airways to contract, so that the airways remain open and air can flow freely. Use Spiriva coupons to get the best deals today.

What is Ipratropium?

Ipratropium, commonly known by its brand name, Atrovent, is a medication used in COPD treatment. As an anticholinergic medication, it acts as an acetylcholine receptor antagonist in the airway smooth muscle cells that line the airways.

This action helps reduce the secretion of mucus and the narrowing of airways, allowing patients to breathe easier. It can be administered through an inhaler, or nebulizer, depending on the patient’s needs. Along with aiding in the relief of asthma and COPD, this medication also works to treat rhinitis and bronchitis.


Tiotropium and ipratropium are two antimuscarinic agents used to treat chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Both agents have been shown to improve airflow, reduce symptoms, and decrease the rate of COPD exacerbations.

However, when comparing the two, tiotropium appears to be more effective than ipratropium. In several studies, tiotropium has been shown to improve forced expiratory volume in one second and peak expiratory flow rate more than ipratropium.

Additionally, tiotropium reduced COPD exacerbation rates over a 12-month period compared to ipratropium. A large study found that tiotropium reduced the rate of exacerbations by 39.1% compared to 22.1% for ipratropium.

Side Effects 

Tiotropium is considered a long-acting bronchodilator, while ipratropium is considered a short-acting one. As a result, common side effects of tiotropium may include dry mouth, difficulty swallowing, and hoarseness, while ipratropium often causes runny nose, coughing, and throat irritation.

Less common side effects of tiotropium may include blurry vision, difficulty urinating, and muscle spasms. Additionally, ipratropium may cause dizziness, rash, and difficulty breathing. Since taking medication has potential side effects, it is important to discuss the risks and benefits with a doctor before making any decisions.


On average, the retail price of a 30-day supply of tiotropium is about 50% higher than that of ipratropium. While tiotropium may require higher upfront costs, it also offers potential benefits for patients over ipratropium, such as a better rate of adherence and compliance.

Additionally, depending on insurance coverage, the cost of tiotropium can become much more competitive, making it an attractive alternative for those with the right coverage.

Learn the Differences Between Tiotropium vs Ipratropium

Tiotropium vs Ipratropium are very different in their uses and benefits. Tiotropium is more long-acting and allows fewer treatments while Ipratropium is more short-working and requires more frequent treatments.

Speak with your doctor to choose the best medication for your needs.

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