The Young Are Missing Out on Asthma Drugs

AUGUST 01, 2003

Prescription drugs to control the increasing rate of asthma in children and young adults are being underutilized, according to results of a study presented recently at the Pediatric Academic Societies conference.

Researchers from the University of Michigan examined the records of 19,000 people, aged 5 to 21. They looked at whether the patients had prescriptions for 1 or more of a number of medications, including inhalers used when attacks are imminent or under way and longer-term drugs to reduce the likelihood of attacks. The researchers found that 16% of the patients had no prescriptions for short-acting medications and that 9% had no asthma medications at all. Also, those who had no prescriptions went to emergency rooms 30% more often, compared with those who had prescriptions.



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