Inhaled corticosteroids affect final adult height

posted 11 Sep 2012, 16:15 by Damian Wood   [ updated 7 Dec 2013, 04:09 ]
Kelly et al report in the New England Journal of Medicine that in 941 participants in the Childhood Asthma Management Program where starting at the age of 5 to 13 years, the participants had been randomly assigned to receive 400 μg of budesonide, 16 mg of nedocromil, or placebo daily for 4 to 6 years the use of inhaled glucocorticoids for persistent asthma causes a reduction in growth velocity in prepubertal children. They found that mean adult height was 1.2 cm lower (95% confidence interval [CI], −1.9 to −0.5) in the budesonide group than in the placebo group (P=0.001) ). A larger daily dose of inhaled glucocorticoid in the first 2 years was associated with a lower adult height. The reduction in adult height in the budesonide group as compared with the placebo group was similar to that seen after 2 years of treatment. They conclude that the initial decrease in attained height associated with the use of inhaled glucocorticoids in prepubertal children persists as a reduction in adult height.