A new analysis was recently published by The Lancet Respiratory Medicine to demonstrate that there are relatively few patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who may gain benefits from adding inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) treatments to their regimens.
This latest post-hoc analysis suggests that routine eosinophil blood tests may be useful for detecting the small number of very severe or severe COPD patients; this specific group would benefit from adding ICS treatments to their programs.
Just 20 percent of the patients involved in the WISDOM study one showed improvements thanks to adding ICS treatments with their Spiriva and a LABA. The results showed a decreased risk of exacerbation.
“Long-acting bronchodilators are a mainstay therapy in COPD management; however, in clinical practice, ICS is widely used across all COPD stages,” Peter Calverley, study investigator and professor at the University of Liverpool, said. “Previously, it has been difficult to determine the subset of patients who respond to ICS. These findings will help physicians more confidently identify which patients may benefit from ICS therapy, helping minimize exposure to the risk of side effects related to long-term ICS use.”
This analysis will serve to continue the ongoing debate concerning how to choose patients who need ICS treatments for their illness.
“These results are thought-provoking and add to the current debate about the appropriate use of ICS therapy in COPD,” William Mezzanotte, head of respiratory medicine at Boehringer-Ingelheim, said. “We look forward to further discussion and investigation of this important topic.”