A study from the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in the USA analysed environmental exposures, like pet and second-hand smoke, to determine if they have a role in asthma control among children whose asthma is managed per NAEPP (EPR-3) guidelines. Researchers found that once asthma guidelines are followed, environmental exposures to pets or second-hand smoke were not significant factors in overall asthma improvement over time.
Children with the diagnosis of uncontrolled asthma and were followed at a paediatric asthma centre were provided asthma care as per NAEPP guidelines. At each visit (3-6 months), families completed asthma questionnaires including acute care needs, symptom control and asthma control test (ACT). Asthma control in patients was evaluated at each visit. Results were compared between patients with or without exposure to second-hand smoking and between patients with or without exposure to pets (cats or dogs) at home at baseline and over time.
Three hundred and ninety-five children, ages 2 to 17 years, were included in this study; 25 per cent were exposed to second-hand tobacco smoke, and 55 per cent were exposed to a cat or dog at home. Clinical outcomes included over time in this cohort, and this improvement was independent of pet exposure. These findings suggest that asthma treatment is more important than certain types of environmental exposures.
(Source: CHEST American College of CHEST Physicians, CHEST Journal)