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Beclomethasone as rescue-therapy-only for childhood asthma
Daily inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) may retard growth in children, who would rather play than take daily inhalers. Martinez et al randomized children with mild persistent asthma to four groups, one of which was beclomethasone + albuterol as rescue therapy only (i.e., no daily ICS), for 44 months. They did slightly worse than children taking daily ICS (35% exacerbation rate vs ~30%, and 8.5% treatment failure rate vs 3 - 6%), but grew 1 cm taller over the study period, with no adverse events. (n=843). Lancet 2011;377:650-657.