Patients more adherent to ICS/LABA therapy than ICS+LTRA (ICS/LABA works better too, regardless of adherence)

A recent study sponsored by the British NHS suggested that the use of leukotriene receptor antagonists (LTRAs) in addition to inhaled corticosteroids (ICSs) in asthmatic patients provides comparable benefits to the addition of long-acting β-agonists (LABAs) to ICSs.

This study from Canada included 1032 adults with asthma receiving ICS+LTRA therapy versus ICS/LABA therapy after a period of monotherapy with an ICS (mean age 27 years; 52.5% female).

Adherence was higher in the ICS/LABA group compared with the ICS+LTRA group. ICS+LTRA therapy was associated with more asthma-related outpatient visits, medication dispensations, and dispensation of reliever medications. Dispensation of oral corticosteroids and rate of asthma exacerbations were also higher in the ICS+LTRA group.

In a real-world clinical setting subjects were more adherent to ICS/LABA therapy than ICS+LTRA therapy. ICS/LABA therapy seems to be more effective than ICS+LTRA therapy in the management of asthma, regardless of adherence.

Asthma Inhalers (click to enlarge the image).


Comparative outcomes of leukotriene receptor antagonists and long-acting β-agonists as add-on therapy in asthmatic patients: A population-based study. Mohsen Sadatsafavi et al. The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Volume 132, Issue 1 , Pages 63-69, July 2013.

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