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Use of inhaled corticosteroid led to fewer hospitalizations for young children with asthma

San Antonio, Tex. March 19, 2005 A new study, presented at the 61st annual American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) showed that children who were prescribed a nebulized inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) as first-line treatment for asthma, experienced fewer emergency department (ED) visits or hospitalizations than children prescribed the medication as second or third-line treatment . Asthma is the most common chronic medical condition among children under the age of 15 and the third leading cause of hospitalization in this age group.4

In the study, 25 percent of children who received nebulized ICS as an initial therapy had to visit an ED or stay in the hospital at least once during one year of follow-up, compared to nearly 30 percent who had nebulized ICS as a secondary treatment, and 40 percent who took it as a third line treatment.

"Pediatric patients who were prescribed nebulized ICS earlier in treatment had a lower rate of exacerbations," said Kevin Murphy, MD, Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and principal investigator in the study.

The study assessed whether early controller medications, such as the nebulized ICS Pulmicort Respules (budesonide inhalation suspension), were associated with improved outcomes for children with asthma. The trial evaluated a total of 11,407 patients aged 12 months to four years who were diagnosed with asthma. Researchers evaluated exacerbation rates during a 12-month period following the first asthma medication prescription. In this study, exacerbation was defined as one or more ED visits or hospitalizations during the study period.

Parents who recognize the symptoms of asthma in their children coughing, wheezing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath should inform their doctor or healthcare provider and obtain a proper diagnosis of the condition. Treatment options for childhood asthma can be broken down into two catego
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21-Mar-2005


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