Oct 22, 1992

Long-term effects of a long-acting beta 2-adrenoceptor agonist, salmeterol, on airway hyperresponsiveness in patients with mild asthma

The New England Journal of Medicine
D CheungP J Sterk


Asthma is characterized by hyperresponsiveness of the airways to bronchoconstrictive stimuli. Long-acting beta 2-adrenoceptor agonists have been introduced as a new therapeutic approach, but there is growing concern about whether control of asthma may deteriorate with the regular use of these agents. We investigated the long-term effects of the beta 2 agonist salmeterol on bronchodilation and on airway hyperresponsiveness to the bronchoconstrictive agent methacholine in mild asthma. In a parallel, double-blind study, 24 patients with mild asthma were randomly assigned to treatment with either inhaled salmeterol (50 micrograms, twice daily) (n = 12) or placebo (n = 12) during an eight-week trial. Methacholine challenge was performed before, during, and after the treatment period. Methacholine responsiveness was measured as the provocative concentration (PC20) that caused a 20 percent decrease in the forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1). There was a significant increase in FEV1 one hour after the inhalation of salmeterol (P = 0.006), which did not differ significantly on days 0, 28, and 56 of the treatment period (increase, 9.8, 9.4, and 8.8 percent of predicted FEV1, respectively; P = 0.91). On the first treatment day, ...Continue Reading

  • References13
  • Citations172


Mentioned in this Paper

Salmeterol xinafoate
Drug Tolerance
Bronchoconstrictor Agents
Broncholytic Effect
Bronchial Provocation Tests
Adrenergic beta-Agonists

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