Childhood asthma treatment still inappropriate in the UK

Armen Hareyan's picture
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Asthma Treatment in Children

Children with asthma are missing out on the best drug treatment for their disease, because family doctors are ignoring prescribing guidelines, suggests research published ahead of print in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

Around a million children in the UK have asthma, and the disease prompts up to a third of children aged between 5 and 13 to visit their doctor.

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The researchers used national data to calculate the number of prescriptions issued for asthma drugs by doctors working in the community in the UK between 2000 and 2006.

These figures were then matched with guidance issued by the British Thoracic Society (BTS), updated in 2005, on the most appropriate drug treatments for children with asthma.

The guidance discourages the use of syrups designed to open up the airways (bronchodilator syrups), because they have a systemic rather than a targeted effect, and don

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