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Wednesday 01 March 2000

[Control of inhaled triggering factors decreases prolonged drug therapy requirements in patients with asthma]

By: Hernandez M, Salmen S, Berrueta L, Navas M, Sanchez B, Munoz J, Delgado R, Romano E, Rangel A.

Invest Clin 2000 Mar;41(1):3-18

The past decade of research has led to a greater understanding of the pathogenesis of asthma and, in particular, the pivotal role of the underlying inflammatory process. Along with inheritance in atopic patients, the presence of inhaled triggering allergens are considered the predominant predisposing factors in the development of the disease. We have conducted a longitudinal clinical therapeutic study, which included 45 pediatrics patients with asthma, in order to evaluate whether the removal of any potential inhaled triggering factor, could decrease the requirement of drug based anti-inflammatory therapy. Patients admitted in this study presented at least, two monthly asthma attacks during the last four months. A single treatment with theophylline (group A), beclomethasone (group B) or salbutamol (group C), was prescribed during the first 2 weeks, along with specific instructions to avoid inhaled allergens. Regardless of the drug used, patients showed impressive and prolonged clinical improvement during 6 months, reduction of total IgE serum levels in the three groups (p < 0.02; 0.005 and 0.02 respectively) and favorable modification of force expiratory volume at the first second, forced vital capacity and flow expiratory peak. During the observation period a constant monitoring of mites allergens concentrations was performed, showing a decrease of these antigens, associated with clinical improvement, and only in those patients who remained symptomatic (group A 31%, group B 29% and group C 9%), failures performing the measures designed to reduce their exposure to environmental allergens, was demonstrated. These results suggest that reduction of inhaled triggering factors may decrease the requirement of anti-inflammatory drug therapy to control the symptoms in patients with asthma.

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