Lege Artis Medicinae

[SEVERE THERAPY RESISTANT BRONCHIAL ASTHMA]

HERJAVECZ Irén, BÁNKÚTI Beáta, CSOMA Zsuzsanna

DECEMBER 16, 2006

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2006;16(12)

[While severe asthma associated with high morbidity affects a relatively small proportion of all patients with asthma, it requires special attention and innovative treatment approaches. Although asthma is by definition characterized by reversible airflow obstruction, the obstruction becomes fixed to some extent and refractory to corticosteroids with the progression of the disease. The underlying change in this phenotype is airway wall remodelling. In allergic asthmatic patients who remain symptomatic despite highdose inhaled corticosteroid therapy, blockade of IgE with omalizumab confers appreciable clinical benefit. Chronic severe asthma is also accompanied by a marked increase in TNFproduction that might contribute to corticosteroid resistance. In accordance with this, TNF blockade with entanercept has been shown to improve asthma controll and at the same time to reduce bronchial hyperresponsiveness. Identification of new susceptibility genes, such as ADAM33, will provide further targets for therapy, which in turn can result in the development of treatment tools that modify the natural course of asthma and reverse the changes associated with airway remodelling, rather than simply suppress inflammation and dilate the airways.]

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