Risk of asthma exacerbations increases with high-frequent use of short-acting beta-agonists
News
12-11-2020

Risk of asthma exacerbations increases with high-frequent use of short-acting beta-agonists

Proper use of inhalation medication is important to prevent asthma exacerbations. Asthma patients often receive a combination of medicines: an anti-inflammatory medicine as a maintenance medication and a bronchodilator when shortness of breath is experienced. Research from the Nivel and General Practice Research Institute (GPRI) shows that people who are adherent to their maintenance medication but still often need short-acting beta-agonists are more likely to have exacerbations. Frequent use of short-acting beta-agonists can therefore serve as a signal for the GP to discuss the use of the asthma medication with the patient and further optimize the treatment.

Asthma is a common chronic disease of the lungs; about 10% of the Dutch population has asthma. The condition is often treated with a combination of anti-inflammatory maintenance medications and bronchodilators. The maintenance medication needs to be inhaled by patients daily. The bronchodilators provide immediate relief when the patient is short of breath. Proper use of these medications is important to prevent asthma exacerbations.