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Investigators evaluate role medication adherence plays in asthma patient outcomes.

By jeremyc | August 29, 2009

 MedPage Today (8/27, Bankhead) reported, “Oral controller medications led to better asthma outcomes compared with inhaled steroids because patients were more likely to take the drugs,” according to a paper appearing in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. When “adherence was not an issue, inhaled corticosteroids reduced the risk of emergency department visits and hospitalization and were associated with lower treatment costs.” Still, “adherence to inhaled steroids was so poor that the medication had little impact on disease control,” prompting the authors to recommend that “a leukotriene modifier may be a reasonable choice for monotherapy.” Nonetheless, “inhaled corticosteroids plus long-acting beta-agonists should be considered the first choice when patients are switched from monotherapy to combination therapy, as recommended by the 2002 and 2007 National Asthma Education and Prevention Program.”

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