Inhaled corticosteroids cannot adequately protect children with asthma from high levels of air pollution, according to a newly published study. In fact, the results show that they may actually exacerbate the effects of air pollutants!
The researcher found that both long-term and short-term exposures to
air pollution were associated with decreased lung function and increased
airway hyper-responsiveness (increased risk of airway spasms) among 1003 children with asthma who were
enrolled in a trial comparing budesonide (Pulmicort, AstraZeneca) with nedocromil (which has since been withdrawn from the US market) or placebo.
Significantly, children receiving either budesonide or nedocromil had
a more pronounced worsening of airway responsiveness with exposure to
carbon monoxide (CO) than the children who were assigned to placebo.
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Source: Ambient air pollution, lung function, and airway responsiveness in asthmatic children