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Diagnosis and Treatment |

Drug Spotlight Program: Drug Therapy in the Management of Asthma

PAUL P. VanARSDEL JR., M.D., F.A.C.P.; and GLENNON H. PAUL, M.D.
[+] Article and Author Information

▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to Paul P. VanArsdel, Jr., M.D.; Department of Medicine, R.M.-13, University Hospital; Seattle, WA 98195.


Seattle, Washington


Ann Intern Med. 1977;87(1):68-74. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-87-1-68
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In the past decade there has been substantial improvement in the quality of drug therapy for asthma. In part, this reflects the greater sophistication and confidence in the use of bronchodilator drugs, after their role in modifying the intracellular concentration of cyclic nucleotides was discovered. Another advance has come from the appearance of adequate information on theophylline blood levels and half-lives and their variability in man. The increasing availability of theophylline blood levels has aided not only in the selection of therapeutic doses but also in determining the effectiveness of newer products that, for example, promise to have a more sustained effect when given by mouth. The plight of asthmatic patients dependent on oral glucosteroid therapy has been substantially eased with the development of new steroid-sparing drugs that are effective by inhalation.

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