Azithromycin was effective in reducing the symptoms of asthma exacerbations in pediatric patients, according to a recent double blind, randomized study published in The Lancet.
“The results of this study identify a potential treatment for a common childhood disease for which better treatment options are needed than are currently available,” Jakob Stokholm, PhD, from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, and colleagues wrote. “Better treatments might help to alleviate a substantial disease burden for children, families, and society.”
Stokholm and colleagues evaluated 72 children aged between 1 year and 3 years from the Copenhagen Prospective Studies on Asthma in Childhood 2010 cohort who randomly received either azithromycin or placebo during an asthma-like episode, according to the abstract. Researchers administered 10 mg/kg per day of azithromycin or placebo for patients experiencing asthma-like episodes lasting at least 3 days. Between November 2010 and January 2014, researchers recorded the results of 158 asthma-like episodes among these patients.
They found that children who received azithromycin experienced asthma-like episodes for 3.4 days with 63.3% of episodes (95% CI, 56.0-69.3) significantly shortened compared with 7.7 days for patients who received placebo, according to the abstract. Stokholm and colleagues noted the reduction in asthma-like episode time increased to 83% if azithromycin was administered before day 6 of the episode, with 36% of episodes shortening if azithromycin was administered on or after day 6 (P < .0001). There were no significant clinical adverse events between either group, with 18 events (23%) in the azithromycin group and 24 (30%) in the placebo group (P = .30). – by Jeff Craven
Disclosure: One researcher reports research funding from and a paid consultant role with Chiesi.