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Time to reconsider oral steroid use

Oral corticosteroids (OCS) can be an effective treatment for exacerbations, reducing relapses and acute hospital admissions

but some patients have reported life-altering side-effects 1 associated with cumulative, long-term use.

Once a mainstay of severe asthma care, scientific advancements have now made alternative options to OCS possible. However, uncontrolled severe asthma is a complicated disease with too many patients not receiving timely access to a specialist. The time has come to reconsider the role of OCS in severe asthma care.

WATCH OUR SHORT FILM

find out why we must reconsider this relationship

Read about the case for a fundamental shift in the role of OCS in the management of severe asthma in our Charter

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the scale of our challenge

studies have shown that of people with severe asthma received long - term low-dose ocs over the last five years2,3,4

despite global guidelines recommending OCS be stepped down as soon as asthma is controlled5

our key ask

Scientific advancements and a better understanding of the disease means patients with severe asthma do not have to be reliant on OCS

We are calling on those with the power to change policy to implement strategies ensuring that people with severe asthma are limited to 2–4 courses of ocs per year

references

  • 3 Shaw DE, et al. Eur Resp J 2015;46:1308–1321
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  • 4 Sweeney J, et al. Thorax 2012;67:754–756
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  • 5 Global Initiative for Asthma. Global Strategy for Asthma Management and Prevention, 2020 https://ginasthma.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/ GINA-2020-report_20_06_04-1-wms.pdf Accessed August 2020
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