Characteristics and prognosis of near-fatal asthma exacerbations.

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Characteristics and prognosis of near-fatal asthma exacerbations.

Am J Med Sci. 2015 Aug;350(2):98-102

Authors: Gonzalez-Barcala FJ, Calvo-Alvarez U, Garcia-Sanz MT, Bourdin A, Pose-Reino A, Carreira JM, Moure-Gonzalez JD, Garcia-Couceiro N, Valdes-Cuadrado L, Muñoz X

BACKGROUND: Asthma remains a major public health concern because of its high prevalence and the costs it generates. Near-fatal asthma (NFA) episodes represent the most severe forms of the disease after fatal asthma with significant variations in their incidence between different populations.
OBJECTIVE: To analyze the episodes of NFA over a period of 11 years in the hospital.
METHODS: The authors retrospectively reviewed all admissions due to asthma exacerbation in our hospital between 2000 and 2010 for patients over 18 years of age.
RESULTS: The study included 400 NFA episodes of 285 patients (74% women; mean age 66 years). Of these patients, 228 (80%) had a single episode of NFA and 57 had more than 1 episode during the study period. The authors observed no clear upward or downward trend during the study period. Readmitted patients had more comorbidities, poorer lung function, more severe forms of asthma and more admissions in the year before the index admission. There was a mortality rate of 3.1%. More than 20% of patients were not given controller treatment and more than 40% of patients were not treated with inhaled corticosteroids (ICS).
CONCLUSIONS: NFA episodes are still prevalent in the population of patients with asthma. Reasons for this could be related to improper management in the stable phase, as suggested by the low rate of patients treated with ICS. It also seems necessary to optimize patient management during hospitalization because stays appear prolonged in comparison with studies in other countries.

PMID: 26083648 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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