In 1864, the first steam-driven nebulizer was invented in Germany. This inhaler, known as "Siegle’s steam spray inhaler", used the Venturi principle to atomize liquid medication, and this was the very beginning of nebulizer therapy. The importance of droplet size was not yet understood, so the efficacy of this first device was unfortunately mediocre for many of the medical compounds. The Siegle steam spray inhaler consisted of a spirit burner, which boiled water in the reservoir into steam that could then flow across the top and into a tube suspended in the pharmaceutical solution. The passage of steam drew the medicine into the vapor, and the patient inhaled this vapor through a mouthpiece made of glass. 
When nebulized into a face mask, mouthpiece, or tracheostomy, 1 to 10 mL of the 20% acetylcysteine solution or 2 to 20 mL of the 10% solution may be given every 2 to 6 hours; the recommended dose of acetylcysteine solution for most patients is 3 to 5 mL of the 20% solution or 6 to 10 mL of the 10% solution three to four times a day. Acetylcysteine solution may interact with other drugs. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant before treatment with acetylcysteine solution; it is unknown if it would affect a fetus. It is unknown if acetylcysteine solution passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.