Navigation Links
American Lung Association Study to be Published in the 'New England Journal of Medicine' Finds Prescription Heartburn Medication Does Not Control Asthma Symptoms as Previously Thought

--Practice Changing Study Calls on Doctors to Stop Prescribing Potent Heartburn Medications to Asthma Patients Without Frequent Symptoms of Gastric Reflux--

WASHINGTON, April 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- For nearly 20 years, it was believed that severe asthma symptoms such as coughing, wheezing and breathlessness were triggered in part by acid reflux. A new study conducted by the American Lung Association's Asthma Clinical Research Centers (ACRC) finds the longstanding practice of prescribing heartburn medication to be ineffective and unnecessarily expensive for some asthma patients who do not exhibit symptoms associated with acid reflux such as heartburn or stomach pain.

Patients participating in the American Lung Association's ACRC study were randomly given either 80 milligrams of esomeprazole or placebo. Patients in both groups had similar numbers of poor asthma control episodes, and there were no differences in their lung function or other asthma symptoms. These results show that prescription acid controllers were no more effective than placebo for the treatment of asthma.

The results of this study, which were published today in the New England Journal of Medicine, are considered to be the most comprehensive evaluation to date of the efficacy of prescription heartburn medication to control respiratory flare-ups in asthmatics whose symptoms have not been well controlled by other therapies.

"Each year, people with asthma are spending as much as $10 million dollars on prescription heartburn medication believing it will help control attacks of wheezing, coughing and breathlessness," said Norman H. Edelman, MD, American Lung Association Chief Medical Officer. "Now we know with confidence that silent acid reflux does not play a significant role in poor asthma control. Talk with your doctor before discontinuing any medication, as each patient's specific needs will vary."

For asthma patients with symptoms of gastric reflux such as heartburn that occurs at least twice weekly, the American Lung Association recommends prescription heartburn medication be taken to control heartburn, and not asthma symptoms.

AstraZeneca provided the medication for the study that was funded by the American Lung Association and the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, a component of the National Institutes of Health. AstraZeneca is the national sponsor of the American Lung Association's Breathe Well, Live Well: An Asthma Management Program for Adults. This partnership has helped expand the program into diverse communities across the nation.

The ACRC Network is an American Lung Association sponsored research program that conducts large scale clinical trials with the mission of advancing the care and treatment of people with asthma. The network, with a central data coordinating center and 20 clinical centers located across the country, is the largest of its kind. By placing its clinical centers around the country, the ACRC Network is able to enroll large numbers of patients for clinical trials, thus ensuring relevant research findings can be interpreted with the highest level of scientific authority.


Efficacy of Esomeprazole for Treatment of Poorly Controlled Asthma: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Background: Gastroesophageal reflux (GER) is common in asthma patients but often has mild or no symptoms. It is not known whether treatment of GER with proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) in poorly-controlled asthmatics without GER symptoms can substantially improve asthma control.

Methods: 402 asthmatics with inadequate asthma control despite inhaled corticosteroids and absent or minimal GER symptoms were randomly assigned to either esomeprazole 40 mg b.i.d. or matching placebo in a parallel-group double-masked clinical trial. Participants were followed for 24 weeks with daily asthma diaries, every 4-week spirometry, and asthma symptom questionnaires.

Participants were classified with respect to GER status with ambulatory pH probe monitoring. The primary outcome was the rate of episodes of poor asthma control (EPACs) based on asthma diaries.

Results: Episodes of poor asthma control occurred with similar frequency in the placebo and esomeprazole treatment groups (2.3 vs. 2.5 events/person-year, respectively, P=0.66). There was no treatment effect with respect to components of the EPACs, or secondary outcomes including pulmonary function, airways reactivity, asthma control, symptom scores, nocturnal awakenings, or quality of life. GER documented by pH probe studies in 40% of participants with absent or minimal symptoms did not identify a subgroup benefiting from PPI treatment. Serious adverse events were fewer with esomeprazole than placebo (11 vs. 17).

Conclusion: Despite a high prevalence of asymptomatic GER in patients with poorly controlled asthma, treatment with proton pump inhibitors does not improve control. Silent GER is not a likely cause of poorly controlled asthma.

Norman H. Edelman, MD, disclosed stock ownership with Johnson & Johnson.

About the American Lung Association: Now in its second century, the American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease. With your generous support, the American Lung Association is "Fighting for Air" through research, education and advocacy. For more information about the American Lung Association, a Charity Navigator Four Star Charity and holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872) or visit

SOURCE American Lung Association
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine technology :

1. Vicus Therapeutics to Present at the 234th American Chemical Society National Meeting in Boston, MA
2. Lexicon to Present Research Results at American Chemical Society Meeting Regarding Target of LX1031 Drug Candidate
3. GlaxoSmithKline Receives New HHS Order for H5N1 Bulk Antigen. First North American Clinical Trials with GSKs Candidate Pre-pandemic Flu Vaccine to Start.
4. Aspirin Named 8th World Wonder by Majority of Americans
5. MedImmunes Motavizumab Reduced RSV Hospitalizations by 83 Percent Among High-Risk Native American, Full-Term Infants in Placebo-Controlled Phase 3 study
6. American Heart Association Comment Saving Lives in Type 2 Diabetics: Could It Be as Easy as Lowering Blood Pressure?
7. TrialCheck(R) Cancer Clinical Trial Matching Interface to Debut on American Cancer Society Web Site
8. Hypertension: Journal of the American Heart Association Rapid Access Reports: Hispanics Hypertension Better Controlled With Equal Access to Care
9. Positive Results for NKTR-118 (oral PEG-naloxol) Presented at American Academy of Pain Management Meeting
10. Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis International Society Refutes American Society of Reproductive Medicine Opinion - States Preimplantation Genetic Screening is Beneficial When Performed in Experienced Centers
11. New MIRCERA(R) Data Analyses to be Featured at the American Society of Nephrology Annual Meeting
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/26/2015)... DUBLIN , November 26, 2015 ... has announced the addition of the  ... in the European Therapeutic Drug Monitoring ... Forecasts, Competitive Intelligence, Emerging Opportunities"  report ... ) has announced the addition ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... DUBLIN , November 26, 2015 ... of the "Self Administration of High Viscosity ... ) has announced the addition of ... report to their offering. --> ... the addition of the "Self Administration of ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... November 26, 2015 ... the "Radioimmunoassay Market by Type (Reagents ... Industry, Academics, Clinical Diagnostic Labs), Application (Research, ... to 2020" report to their offering. ... the addition of the "Radioimmunoassay Market ...
Breaking Medicine Technology:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... through sharing, the 2016 Building Better Radiology Marketing Programs meeting will ... on Sunday, March 6, 2016, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas with a ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 2015 , ... Keeping in mind challenges faced by parents ... consultation, has collaborated with a leading web-based marketplace for extra-curricular activities for children ... and bring advice from parenting experts within their reach. As a part of ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Avid collector, Andrew Hawley from Vintage Rock Posters, ... posters. This is one of Joplin's most famous and beautiful concert posters. The concert ... Michigan in Ann Arbor. The According to Hawley, "It is hard to believe that ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... , ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... real-time eReferral system for diagnostic imaging in the Waterloo region. Using the Ocean ... Nuclear Medicine tests directly from their electronic medical record (EMR) without the need ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... PRMA Plastic Surgery is updating ... our surgeons performed their 6,000th free flap breast reconstruction surgery! , “What an accomplishment ... day excited to rebuild lives and it’s an honor to have served all of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):