Inhaled steroids may increase pneumonia risk in COPD

According to Reuters, people with smoking-related COPD who took inhaled steroids (ICS) were 34 percent more likely to develop pneumonia.

The study was a meta-analysis published in JAMA and included 11 previously published studies involving more than 14,000 COPD patients.

The authors concluded that ICS therapy does not affect 1-year all-cause mortality in COPD and ICS therapy was associated with a higher risk of pneumonia.

Update 09/01/2009: Budesonide treatment for 12 months does not increase the risk of pneumonia in patients with COPD http://bit.ly/1PntiS

References:
Inhaled steroids up pneumonia risk in lung ailment. Reuters, Nov 25, 2008.
Inhaled Corticosteroids in Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. M. Bradley Drummond, MD, MHS; Elliott C. Dasenbrook, MD, MHS; Marshall W. Pitz, MD, MHS; David J. Murphy, MD; Eddy Fan, MD. JAMA. 2008;300(20):2407-2416.
Image source: Enlarged view of lung tissue showing the difference between healthy lung and COPD, Wikipedia, public domain.

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