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Asthma Drugs

Asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma is a chronic inflammatory condition of the small airways of the lungs Lungs Lungs are the main organs of the respiratory system. Lungs are paired viscera located in the thoracic cavity and are composed of spongy tissue. The primary function of the lungs is to oxygenate blood and eliminate CO2. Lungs: Anatomy. The condition is characterized by airway Airway ABCDE Assessment hyperresponsiveness, variable Variable Variables represent information about something that can change. The design of the measurement scales, or of the methods for obtaining information, will determine the data gathered and the characteristics of that data. As a result, a variable can be qualitative or quantitative, and may be further classified into subgroups. Types of Variables airway obstruction Airway obstruction Airway obstruction is a partial or complete blockage of the airways that impedes airflow. An airway obstruction can be classified as upper, central, or lower depending on location. Lower airway obstruction (LAO) is usually a manifestation of chronic disease, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Airway Obstruction, and airway Airway ABCDE Assessment inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body's defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation. Manifestations include episodic wheezing Wheezing Wheezing is an abnormal breath sound characterized by a whistling noise that can be relatively high-pitched and shrill (more common) or coarse. Wheezing is produced by the movement of air through narrowed or compressed small (intrathoracic) airways. Wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath Shortness of breath Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea. Management of asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma aims to reduce symptoms and minimize future risks and adverse outcomes (hospitalizations, loss of lung function, etc ETC The electron transport chain (ETC) sends electrons through a series of proteins, which generate an electrochemical proton gradient that produces energy in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Electron Transport Chain (ETC).). Medications commonly utilized include inhalers that allow bronchodilation and inflammatory control. Biologic agents Biologic Agents Immunosuppressants are available for severe asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma.

Last updated: Nov 14, 2022

Editorial responsibility: Stanley Oiseth, Lindsay Jones, Evelin Maza

Overview

  • Asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma is a lung condition characterized by:
    • Airway Airway ABCDE Assessment hyperresponsiveness (due to release of mediators, e.g., histamine)
    • Variable Variable Variables represent information about something that can change. The design of the measurement scales, or of the methods for obtaining information, will determine the data gathered and the characteristics of that data. As a result, a variable can be qualitative or quantitative, and may be further classified into subgroups. Types of Variables airway obstruction Airway obstruction Airway obstruction is a partial or complete blockage of the airways that impedes airflow. An airway obstruction can be classified as upper, central, or lower depending on location. Lower airway obstruction (LAO) is usually a manifestation of chronic disease, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Airway Obstruction (due to bronchoconstriction and inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation)
    • Airway Airway ABCDE Assessment inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation (due to recruitment Recruitment Skeletal Muscle Contraction of inflammatory cells)
  • Goals of asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma management:
    • Preventing/reversing bronchoconstriction:
      • β-agonists (e.g., albuterol Albuterol A short-acting beta-2 adrenergic agonist that is primarily used as a bronchodilator agent to treat asthma. Sympathomimetic Drugs)
      • Methylxanthines (e.g., theophylline)
      • Muscarinic antagonists Muscarinic antagonists Drugs that bind to but do not activate muscarinic receptors, thereby blocking the actions of endogenous acetylcholine or exogenous agonists. Muscarinic antagonists have widespread effects including actions on the iris and ciliary muscle of the eye, the heart and blood vessels, secretions of the respiratory tract, GI system, and salivary glands, GI motility, urinary bladder tone, and the central nervous system. Anticholinergic Drugs (e.g., ipratropium Ipratropium A muscarinic antagonist structurally related to atropine but often considered safer and more effective for inhalation use. It is used for various bronchial disorders, in rhinitis, and as an antiarrhythmic. Anticholinergic Drugs)
    • Preventing mast cell Mast cell Granulated cells that are found in almost all tissues, most abundantly in the skin and the gastrointestinal tract. Like the basophils, mast cells contain large amounts of histamine and heparin. Unlike basophils, mast cells normally remain in the tissues and do not circulate in the blood. Mast cells, derived from the bone marrow stem cells, are regulated by the stem cell factor. Angioedema degranulation:
    • Preventing the release of inflammatory mediators:
      • Corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis
      • Antileukotrienes (e.g., montelukast, zafirlukast, zileuton)
      • Antibodies Antibodies Immunoglobulins (Igs), also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells that act in immune responses by recognizing and binding particular antigens. The various Ig classes are IgG (the most abundant), IgM, IgE, IgD, and IgA, which differ in their biologic features, structure, target specificity, and distribution. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions (e.g., mepolizumab)
Mechanisms of asthma medications

Points in the pathophysiology where asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma medications mediate their action

Image by Lecturio.
Table: Classification of drugs used in asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma
Function Class Examples
Bronchodilators β-agonists
  • Short-acting β-agonists (SABAs): albuterol Albuterol A short-acting beta-2 adrenergic agonist that is primarily used as a bronchodilator agent to treat asthma. Sympathomimetic Drugs, terbutaline, levalbuterol
  • Long-acting β-agonists (LABAs): salmeterol, formoterol
Methylxanthines Theophylline
Muscarinic antagonists Muscarinic antagonists Drugs that bind to but do not activate muscarinic receptors, thereby blocking the actions of endogenous acetylcholine or exogenous agonists. Muscarinic antagonists have widespread effects including actions on the iris and ciliary muscle of the eye, the heart and blood vessels, secretions of the respiratory tract, GI system, and salivary glands, GI motility, urinary bladder tone, and the central nervous system. Anticholinergic Drugs
  • Short-acting muscarinic antagonist (SAMA): ipratropium Ipratropium A muscarinic antagonist structurally related to atropine but often considered safer and more effective for inhalation use. It is used for various bronchial disorders, in rhinitis, and as an antiarrhythmic. Anticholinergic Drugs
  • Long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA): tiotropium
Anti-inflammatory agents Mast cell Mast cell Granulated cells that are found in almost all tissues, most abundantly in the skin and the gastrointestinal tract. Like the basophils, mast cells contain large amounts of histamine and heparin. Unlike basophils, mast cells normally remain in the tissues and do not circulate in the blood. Mast cells, derived from the bone marrow stem cells, are regulated by the stem cell factor. Angioedema degranulation inhibitors (chromones) Cromolyn, nedocromil
Antibodies Antibodies Immunoglobulins (Igs), also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells that act in immune responses by recognizing and binding particular antigens. The various Ig classes are IgG (the most abundant), IgM, IgE, IgD, and IgA, which differ in their biologic features, structure, target specificity, and distribution. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions
  • Against IgE IgE An immunoglobulin associated with mast cells. Overexpression has been associated with allergic hypersensitivity. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions: omalizumab
  • Against interleukin (IL)-5: mepolizumab
  • Against IL-5 receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors: benralizumab
  • Against IL-4 receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors: dupilumab
Corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis (CS)
  • Beclomethasone
  • Budesonide
  • Flunisolide
  • Mometasone
  • Prednisone Prednisone A synthetic anti-inflammatory glucocorticoid derived from cortisone. It is biologically inert and converted to prednisolone in the liver. Immunosuppressants
  • Methylprednisolone Methylprednisolone A prednisolone derivative with similar anti-inflammatory action. Immunosuppressants
Antileukotriene agents Lipoxygenase inhibitors Zileuton
Leukotriene antagonists Montelukast, zafirlukast

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Bronchodilators: β2-Agonists

Types and administration

  • SABA:
    • Albuterol Albuterol A short-acting beta-2 adrenergic agonist that is primarily used as a bronchodilator agent to treat asthma. Sympathomimetic Drugs (inhalation, oral)
    • Levalbuterol (inhalation)
    • Terbutaline (oral, intravenous (IV))
  • LABA
    • Salmeterol (inhalation)
    • Formoterol (inhalation)
    • Vilanterol (inhalation)

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Drug binds the β-2 adrenergic receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors.
  • Effect: stimulates increase in cAMP cAMP An adenine nucleotide containing one phosphate group which is esterified to both the 3′- and 5′-positions of the sugar moiety. It is a second messenger and a key intracellular regulator, functioning as a mediator of activity for a number of hormones, including epinephrine, glucagon, and acth. Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors in smooth muscle cells → smooth muscle relaxation → dilation of bronchioles Bronchioles The small airways branching off the tertiary bronchi. Terminal bronchioles lead into several orders of respiratory bronchioles which in turn lead into alveolar ducts and then into pulmonary alveoli. Bronchial Tree: Anatomy
  • SABA: duration of 4–6 hours and onset within 5 minutes
  • LABA: duration of up to 12 hours

Clinical uses

  • SABA:
    • Rapidly acting bronchodilator, used in acute asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma exacerbation 
    • Oral form not recommended for acute exacerbation (longer onset of action, less effective bronchodilation)
  • LABA:
    • Used only with inhaled corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis, not as a monotherapy
    • Combined inhaled CS and LABA (low-dose inhaled CS-formoterol): can be used as acute symptom reliever (Global Initiative for Asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma guidelines)
    • Used for exercise-induced bronchoconstriction and prevention of nocturnal symptoms

Side effects

  • β2-mediated skeletal muscle tremors (most common side effect)
  • Other effects:
    • Tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children (cardiac β receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors stimulation)
    • Hyperglycemia Hyperglycemia Abnormally high blood glucose level. Diabetes Mellitus
    • Hypokalemia Hypokalemia Hypokalemia is defined as plasma potassium (K+) concentration < 3.5 mEq/L. Homeostatic mechanisms maintain plasma concentration between 3.5-5.2 mEq/L despite marked variation in dietary intake. Hypokalemia can be due to renal losses, GI losses, transcellular shifts, or poor dietary intake. Hypokalemia

Precautions

  • Use with caution in cardiovascular disease (arrhythmia, heart failure Heart Failure A heterogeneous condition in which the heart is unable to pump out sufficient blood to meet the metabolic need of the body. Heart failure can be caused by structural defects, functional abnormalities (ventricular dysfunction), or a sudden overload beyond its capacity. Chronic heart failure is more common than acute heart failure which results from sudden insult to cardiac function, such as myocardial infarction. Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR), coronary artery disease Coronary artery disease Pathological processes of coronary arteries that may derive from a congenital abnormality, atherosclerotic, or non-atherosclerotic cause. Stable and Unstable Angina).
  • May increase glucose Glucose A primary source of energy for living organisms. It is naturally occurring and is found in fruits and other parts of plants in its free state. It is used therapeutically in fluid and nutrient replacement. Lactose Intolerance in diabetics
  • May elevate intraocular pressure Intraocular Pressure The pressure of the fluids in the eye. Ophthalmic Exam in glaucoma Glaucoma Glaucoma is an optic neuropathy characterized by typical visual field defects and optic nerve atrophy seen as optic disc cupping on examination. The acute form of glaucoma is a medical emergency. Glaucoma is often, but not always, caused by increased intraocular pressure (IOP). Glaucoma
Asthma inhaler

An inhaler used for asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma treatment: Inhaled respiratory medications such as bronchodilators and corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis are available in metered-dose inhalers. This device allows delivery of a measured amount of medication into the airway Airway ABCDE Assessment.

Image: “ Asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma Inhaler” by NIAID. License: CC BY 2.0

Bronchodilators: Muscarinic Antagonists

Types and administration

  • SAMA: ipratropium Ipratropium A muscarinic antagonist structurally related to atropine but often considered safer and more effective for inhalation use. It is used for various bronchial disorders, in rhinitis, and as an antiarrhythmic. Anticholinergic Drugs bromide (inhalation)
  • LAMA: tiotropium bromide Tiotropium Bromide A scopolamine derivative and cholinergic antagonist that functions as a bronchodilator agent. It is used in the treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Anticholinergic Drugs (inhalation)

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Competitively block muscarinic receptors Receptors Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors, thereby preventing vagal-induced bronchoconstriction
  • cyclic guanosine monophosphate Cyclic guanosine monophosphate Guanosine cyclic 3. Second Messengers ( cGMP cGMP Guanosine cyclic 3. Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors) → ↓ smooth muscle contraction Smooth muscle contraction Smooth muscle is primarily found in the walls of hollow structures and some visceral organs, including the walls of the vasculature, GI, respiratory, and genitourinary tracts. Smooth muscle contracts more slowly and is regulated differently than skeletal muscle. Smooth muscle can be stimulated by nerve impulses, hormones, metabolic factors (like pH, CO2 or O2 levels), its own intrinsic pacemaker ability, or even mechanical stretch. Smooth Muscle Contraction and ↓ mucus secretion Secretion Coagulation Studies
  • No anti-inflammatory effect

Clinical uses

  • Less effective than β2-agonists for acute exacerbation but with additive benefit
  • Long-term maintenance treatment in children > 6 years of age and adults with severe symptomatic asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma uncontrolled with inhaled CS
  • Also used in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a lung disease characterized by progressive, largely irreversible airflow obstruction. The condition usually presents in middle-aged or elderly persons with a history of cigarette smoking. Signs and symptoms include prolonged expiration, wheezing, diminished breath sounds, progressive dyspnea, and chronic cough. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

Side effects

  • Few systemic effects because of poor absorption Absorption Absorption involves the uptake of nutrient molecules and their transfer from the lumen of the GI tract across the enterocytes and into the interstitial space, where they can be taken up in the venous or lymphatic circulation. Digestion and Absorption into the  circulation Circulation The movement of the blood as it is pumped through the cardiovascular system. ABCDE Assessment
  • Minor atropine-like effects with high doses

Precautions

  • Use with caution in patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship with narrow-angle glaucoma Glaucoma Glaucoma is an optic neuropathy characterized by typical visual field defects and optic nerve atrophy seen as optic disc cupping on examination. The acute form of glaucoma is a medical emergency. Glaucoma is often, but not always, caused by increased intraocular pressure (IOP). Glaucoma (can increase intraocular pressure Intraocular Pressure The pressure of the fluids in the eye. Ophthalmic Exam).
  • Bladder Bladder A musculomembranous sac along the urinary tract. Urine flows from the kidneys into the bladder via the ureters, and is held there until urination. Pyelonephritis and Perinephric Abscess neck Neck The part of a human or animal body connecting the head to the rest of the body. Peritonsillar Abscess obstruction/prostatic hyperplasia Hyperplasia An increase in the number of cells in a tissue or organ without tumor formation. It differs from hypertrophy, which is an increase in bulk without an increase in the number of cells. Cellular Adaptation (may cause urinary retention Urinary retention Inability to empty the urinary bladder with voiding (urination). Delirium)

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Bronchodilators: Methylxanthines

Types and administration

  • Theophylline (oral, IV)
  • Theobromine (found in cocoa) and caffeine Caffeine A methylxanthine naturally occurring in some beverages and also used as a pharmacological agent. Caffeine’s most notable pharmacological effect is as a central nervous system stimulant, increasing alertness and producing agitation. Several cellular actions of caffeine have been observed, but it is not entirely clear how each contributes to its pharmacological profile. Among the most important are inhibition of cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterases, antagonism of adenosine receptors, and modulation of intracellular calcium handling. Stimulants (found in coffee Coffee A beverage made from ground coffee beans (seeds) infused in hot water. It generally contains caffeine and theophylline unless it is decaffeinated. Constipation) are also methylxanthines.

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Blockage of receptors Receptors Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors for adenosine Adenosine A nucleoside that is composed of adenine and d-ribose. Adenosine or adenosine derivatives play many important biological roles in addition to being components of DNA and RNA. Adenosine itself is a neurotransmitter. Class 5 Antiarrhythmic Drugs (which provokes smooth muscle contraction Smooth muscle contraction Smooth muscle is primarily found in the walls of hollow structures and some visceral organs, including the walls of the vasculature, GI, respiratory, and genitourinary tracts. Smooth muscle contracts more slowly and is regulated differently than skeletal muscle. Smooth muscle can be stimulated by nerve impulses, hormones, metabolic factors (like pH, CO2 or O2 levels), its own intrinsic pacemaker ability, or even mechanical stretch. Smooth Muscle Contraction and histamine release) 
  • Inhibition of phosphodiesterase (which degrades cyclic adenosine monophosphate Cyclic adenosine monophosphate An adenine nucleotide containing one phosphate group which is esterified to both the 3′- and 5′-positions of the sugar moiety. It is a second messenger and a key intracellular regulator, functioning as a mediator of activity for a number of hormones, including epinephrine, glucagon, and acth. Second Messengers ( cAMP cAMP An adenine nucleotide containing one phosphate group which is esterified to both the 3′- and 5′-positions of the sugar moiety. It is a second messenger and a key intracellular regulator, functioning as a mediator of activity for a number of hormones, including epinephrine, glucagon, and acth. Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors)) → smooth muscle relaxation
  • Overall, results in bronchodilation and reduced inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation

Clinical uses

  • Non-preferred alternative for asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma that is uncontrolled with inhaled CS
  • Decreases exacerbations; has similar effect as increasing the dosage Dosage Dosage Calculation of the inhaled CS
  • Modest anti-inflammatory action
  • Narrow therapeutic index Therapeutic Index An indicator of the benefits and risks of treatment. Dosage Calculation and serum concentration must be monitored regularly.
  • Despite disadvantages, theophylline is used in some countries due to low cost.

Side effects

  • Gastrointestinal symptoms ( nausea Nausea An unpleasant sensation in the stomach usually accompanied by the urge to vomit. Common causes are early pregnancy, sea and motion sickness, emotional stress, intense pain, food poisoning, and various enteroviruses. Antiemetics, vomiting Vomiting The forcible expulsion of the contents of the stomach through the mouth. Hypokalemia), tremor Tremor Cyclical movement of a body part that can represent either a physiologic process or a manifestation of disease. Intention or action tremor, a common manifestation of cerebellar diseases, is aggravated by movement. In contrast, resting tremor is maximal when there is no attempt at voluntary movement, and occurs as a relatively frequent manifestation of parkinson disease. Myotonic Dystrophies, headache Headache The symptom of pain in the cranial region. It may be an isolated benign occurrence or manifestation of a wide variety of headache disorders. Brain Abscess
  • Toxic doses:  hypotension Hypotension Hypotension is defined as low blood pressure, specifically < 90/60 mm Hg, and is most commonly a physiologic response. Hypotension may be mild, serious, or life threatening, depending on the cause. Hypotension, cardiac arrhythmias, seizures Seizures A seizure is abnormal electrical activity of the neurons in the cerebral cortex that can manifest in numerous ways depending on the region of the brain affected. Seizures consist of a sudden imbalance that occurs between the excitatory and inhibitory signals in cortical neurons, creating a net excitation. The 2 major classes of seizures are focal and generalized. Seizures, and possibly death

Precautions

  • Limited use due to significant side effects and life-threatening toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation
  • Use with caution in patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship with seizures Seizures A seizure is abnormal electrical activity of the neurons in the cerebral cortex that can manifest in numerous ways depending on the region of the brain affected. Seizures consist of a sudden imbalance that occurs between the excitatory and inhibitory signals in cortical neurons, creating a net excitation. The 2 major classes of seizures are focal and generalized. Seizures, cardiac arrhythmias, hepatic impairment, peptic ulcer Peptic ulcer Peptic ulcer disease (PUD) refers to the full-thickness ulcerations of duodenal or gastric mucosa. The ulcerations form when exposure to acid and digestive enzymes overcomes mucosal defense mechanisms. The most common etiologies include Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection and prolonged use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Peptic Ulcer Disease disease, and hyperthyroidism Hyperthyroidism Hypersecretion of thyroid hormones from the thyroid gland. Elevated levels of thyroid hormones increase basal metabolic rate. Thyrotoxicosis and Hyperthyroidism.

Corticosteroids

Types and administration

  • Inhaled corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis (ICS): beclomethasone, budesonide, fluticasone Fluticasone A steroid with glucocorticoid receptor activity that is used to manage the symptoms of asthma; allergic rhinitis, and atopic dermatitis. Glucocorticoids, mometasone, triamcinolone Triamcinolone A glucocorticoid given, as the free alcohol or in esterified form, orally, intramuscularly, by local injection, by inhalation, or applied topically in the management of various disorders in which corticosteroids are indicated. Glucocorticoids  
  • Systemic corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis:
    • Oral CS: prednisone Prednisone A synthetic anti-inflammatory glucocorticoid derived from cortisone. It is biologically inert and converted to prednisolone in the liver. Immunosuppressants, prednisolone Prednisolone A glucocorticoid with the general properties of the corticosteroids. It is the drug of choice for all conditions in which routine systemic corticosteroid therapy is indicated, except adrenal deficiency states. Immunosuppressants 
    • IV CS: hydrocortisone Hydrocortisone The main glucocorticoid secreted by the adrenal cortex. Its synthetic counterpart is used, either as an injection or topically, in the treatment of inflammation, allergy, collagen diseases, asthma, adrenocortical deficiency, shock, and some neoplastic conditions. Immunosuppressants, methylprednisolone Methylprednisolone A prednisolone derivative with similar anti-inflammatory action. Immunosuppressants

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Blocks the release of arachidonic acid Arachidonic Acid An unsaturated, essential fatty acid. It is found in animal and human fat as well as in the liver, brain, and glandular organs, and is a constituent of animal phosphatides. It is formed by the synthesis from dietary linoleic acid and is a precursor in the biosynthesis of prostaglandins, thromboxanes, and leukotrienes. Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) (via  phospholipase A2 Phospholipase A2 Phospholipases that hydrolyze the Acyl group attached to the 2-position of phosphoglycerides. Nephrotic Syndrome inhibition), consequently halting the release of inflammatory mediators
  • Effects:
    • airway Airway ABCDE Assessment hyperresponsiveness
    • airway Airway ABCDE Assessment mucosal edema Edema Edema is a condition in which excess serous fluid accumulates in the body cavity or interstitial space of connective tissues. Edema is a symptom observed in several medical conditions. It can be categorized into 2 types, namely, peripheral (in the extremities) and internal (in an organ or body cavity). Edema
    • ↓ capillary permeability
    • ↓ leukotriene release

Clinical uses

  • ICS: generally, the most effective anti-inflammatory agent for the treatment of asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma
  • Drug of choice for long-term control of persistent asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma
  • Short-term oral CS treatment (< 7 days) of acute severe exacerbations
  • Tapering required if oral CS > 2 weeks

Side effects

  • ICS:
    • Less severe and fewer than those of systemic CS
    • Local effects:
      • Dysphonia Dysphonia Difficulty and/or pain in phonation or speaking. Epiglottitis: less common with devices that produce smaller-sized particles 
      • Thrush: can be avoided by a large-volume spacer with metered-dose inhalers (MDIs); rinsing of the oropharynx Oropharynx The middle portion of the pharynx that lies posterior to the mouth, inferior to the soft palate, and superior to the base of the tongue and epiglottis. It has a digestive function as food passes from the mouth into the oropharynx before entering esophagus. Pharynx: Anatomy and spacer after inhalation also helps
    • Much less common:
  • Systemic CS side effects: adrenal suppression Suppression Defense Mechanisms, weight gain, diabetes Diabetes Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a metabolic disease characterized by hyperglycemia and dysfunction of the regulation of glucose metabolism by insulin. Type 1 DM is diagnosed mostly in children and young adults as the result of autoimmune destruction of β cells in the pancreas and the resulting lack of insulin. Type 2 DM has a significant association with obesity and is characterized by insulin resistance. Diabetes Mellitus, hypertension Hypertension Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a common disease that manifests as elevated systemic arterial pressures. Hypertension is most often asymptomatic and is found incidentally as part of a routine physical examination or during triage for an unrelated medical encounter. Hypertension, immune suppression Suppression Defense Mechanisms, osteoporosis Osteoporosis Osteoporosis refers to a decrease in bone mass and density leading to an increased number of fractures. There are 2 forms of osteoporosis: primary, which is commonly postmenopausal or senile; and secondary, which is a manifestation of immobilization, underlying medical disorders, or long-term use of certain medications. Osteoporosis, and depression

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Antileukotriene Agents

Types and administration

  • Leukotriene receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors antagonists (LTRAs): zafirlukast, montelukast (oral)
  • 5-lipoxygenase inhibitor: zileuton (oral)

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Zileuton: selective inhibition of 5-lipoxygenase (thus preventing conversion of  arachidonic acid Arachidonic Acid An unsaturated, essential fatty acid. It is found in animal and human fat as well as in the liver, brain, and glandular organs, and is a constituent of animal phosphatides. It is formed by the synthesis from dietary linoleic acid and is a precursor in the biosynthesis of prostaglandins, thromboxanes, and leukotrienes. Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) to leukotrienes Leukotrienes A family of biologically active compounds derived from arachidonic acid by oxidative metabolism through the 5-lipoxygenase pathway. They participate in host defense reactions and pathophysiological conditions such as immediate hypersensitivity and inflammation. They have potent actions on many essential organs and systems, including the cardiovascular, pulmonary, and central nervous system as well as the gastrointestinal tract and the immune system. Eicosanoids)
  • Zafirlukast and montelukast: inhibit leukotriene (LT)-D4 receptors Receptors Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors and LTE4 receptors Receptors Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors
  • Effects (by targeting leukotriene):

Clinical uses

  • Exercise-induced bronchospasm
  • Mild persistent asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma + allergic rhinitis Allergic rhinitis An inflammation of the nasal mucosa triggered by allergens. Rhinitis
  • Asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma and aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease
  • Additive benefit for moderate-to-severe persistent asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma
  • Considered in patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship with difficulty with compliance Compliance Distensibility measure of a chamber such as the lungs (lung compliance) or bladder. Compliance is expressed as a change in volume per unit change in pressure. Veins: Histology or inhaler technique (e.g., children)

Side effects

  • Common: headaches, fatigue Fatigue The state of weariness following a period of exertion, mental or physical, characterized by a decreased capacity for work and reduced efficiency to respond to stimuli. Fibromyalgia, dyspepsia Dyspepsia Impaired digestion, especially after eating. Lactose Intolerance 
  • Neuropsychiatric adverse effects: behavior and mood-related changes (especially montelukast) 
  • Zafirlukast and zileuton:
    • Potentially hepatotoxic, requiring liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy function test monitoring
    • Drug interactions (including increased warfarin Warfarin An anticoagulant that acts by inhibiting the synthesis of vitamin K-dependent coagulation factors. Warfarin is indicated for the prophylaxis and/or treatment of venous thrombosis and its extension, pulmonary embolism, and atrial fibrillation with embolization. It is also used as an adjunct in the prophylaxis of systemic embolism after myocardial infarction. Warfarin is also used as a rodenticide. Anticoagulants effect)
  • Eosinophilic granulomatous polyangiitis can develop when antileukotrienes are given to patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship with steroid-dependent asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma.

Precautions

  • Zafirlukast and zileuton:
    • Contraindicated in liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy disease/hepatic impairment
    • Monitor for mood and behavioral changes
  • Montelukast:
    • Monitor for mood and behavioral changes
    • Contains phenylalanine Phenylalanine An essential aromatic amino acid that is a precursor of melanin; dopamine; noradrenalin (norepinephrine), and thyroxine. Synthesis of Nonessential Amino Acids (not recommended for patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship with phenylketonuria)

Mast Cell Stabilizers (Chromones)

Types and administration

  • Cromolyn (nebulization)
  • Nedocromil (not available for asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma treatment in the United States)

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Prevents the degranulation of mast cells Mast cells Granulated cells that are found in almost all tissues, most abundantly in the skin and the gastrointestinal tract. Like the basophils, mast cells contain large amounts of histamine and heparin. Unlike basophils, mast cells normally remain in the tissues and do not circulate in the blood. Mast cells, derived from the bone marrow stem cells, are regulated by the stem cell factor. Innate Immunity: Phagocytes and Antigen Presentation, thereby preventing local inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation 
  • Prevents early and late inflammatory effects

Clinical uses

  • For prevention of exercise-induced bronchospasm 
  • Alternative long-term asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma maintenance therapy
  • Less effective and more expensive than CS
  • Rarely used (metered-dose inhaler not available in the United States)

Side effects

  • Throat Throat The pharynx is a component of the digestive system that lies posterior to the nasal cavity, oral cavity, and larynx. The pharynx can be divided into the oropharynx, nasopharynx, and laryngopharynx. Pharyngeal muscles play an integral role in vital processes such as breathing, swallowing, and speaking. Pharynx: Anatomy irritation
  • No significant toxicity Toxicity Dosage Calculation due to minimal systemic absorption Absorption Absorption involves the uptake of nutrient molecules and their transfer from the lumen of the GI tract across the enterocytes and into the interstitial space, where they can be taken up in the venous or lymphatic circulation. Digestion and Absorption

Antibodies: Anti-IgE

Type(s) and administration

Omalizumab (subcutaneous)

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Monoclonal antibody that binds circulating IgE IgE An immunoglobulin associated with mast cells. Overexpression has been associated with allergic hypersensitivity. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions
  • IgE IgE An immunoglobulin associated with mast cells. Overexpression has been associated with allergic hypersensitivity. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions plays a central role in immediate bronchoconstriction and the influx of inflammatory cells.

Clinical use

  • For persistently uncontrolled allergic asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma despite high-dose ICS and ≥ 1 other controller(s)
  • For patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship with:
    • Age ≥ 6 years
    • An elevated IgE IgE An immunoglobulin associated with mast cells. Overexpression has been associated with allergic hypersensitivity. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions level (30–700 IU/mL)
    • Positive allergen skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions test or specific IgE IgE An immunoglobulin associated with mast cells. Overexpression has been associated with allergic hypersensitivity. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions tests to a perennial allergen
  • Reduces CS requirements

Side effects

  • Urticaria Urticaria Urticaria is raised, well-circumscribed areas (wheals) of edema (swelling) and erythema (redness) involving the dermis and epidermis with associated pruritus (itch). Urticaria is not a single disease but rather is a reaction pattern representing cutaneous mast cell degranulation. Urticaria (Hives), injection site reaction
  • Headache Headache The symptom of pain in the cranial region. It may be an isolated benign occurrence or manifestation of a wide variety of headache disorders. Brain Abscess

Precautions

  • Anaphylaxis Anaphylaxis An acute hypersensitivity reaction due to exposure to a previously encountered antigen. The reaction may include rapidly progressing urticaria, respiratory distress, vascular collapse, systemic shock, and death. Type I Hypersensitivity Reaction/severe hypersensitivity reaction is a contraindication.
  • Monitor for parasitic infections Infections Invasion of the host organism by microorganisms or their toxins or by parasites that can cause pathological conditions or diseases. Chronic Granulomatous Disease (helminth).
  • Cerebrovascular events have been reported.

Antibodies: Anti-IL-5 and Anti-IL-5 Receptor

Types and administration

  • Mepolizumab (subcutaneous)
  • Reslizumab (intravenous)
  • Benralizumab (subcutaneous)

Mechanism of action and effects

  • IL-5 is a pro-eosinophilic cytokine contributing to eosinophilic inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation.
  • Mepolizumab, reslizumab: monoclonal antibody to IL-5
  • Benralizumab: cytotoxic Cytotoxic Parvovirus B19 monoclonal antibody against IL-5 receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors alpha

Clinical use

  • For severe eosinophilic asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma
  • Mepolizumab:
    • For blood eosinophil count ≥ 150 cells/μL
    • Patient age: > 12 years
  • Reslizumab:
    • For blood eosinophil count ≥ 400 cells/μL 
    • Patient age: > 18 years
  • Benralizumab:
    • For blood eosinophil count ≥ 150 cells/μL
    • Patient age: > 12 years

Side effects

  • Mepolizumab: herpes zoster Herpes Zoster Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) is a linear, double-stranded DNA virus in the Herpesviridae family. Shingles (also known as herpes zoster) is more common in adults and occurs due to the reactivation of VZV. Varicella-Zoster Virus/Chickenpox (may give varicella vaccine Vaccine Suspensions of killed or attenuated microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoa), antigenic proteins, synthetic constructs, or other bio-molecular derivatives, administered for the prevention, amelioration, or treatment of infectious and other diseases. Vaccination ≥ 1 month before)
  • Reslizumab: oropharyngeal pain Pain An unpleasant sensation induced by noxious stimuli which are detected by nerve endings of nociceptive neurons. Pain: Types and Pathways
  • Benralizumab: headache Headache The symptom of pain in the cranial region. It may be an isolated benign occurrence or manifestation of a wide variety of headache disorders. Brain Abscess, pharyngitis Pharyngitis Pharyngitis is an inflammation of the back of the throat (pharynx). Pharyngitis is usually caused by an upper respiratory tract infection, which is viral in most cases. It typically results in a sore throat and fever. Other symptoms may include a runny nose, cough, headache, and hoarseness. Pharyngitis

Precautions

  • Anaphylaxis Anaphylaxis An acute hypersensitivity reaction due to exposure to a previously encountered antigen. The reaction may include rapidly progressing urticaria, respiratory distress, vascular collapse, systemic shock, and death. Type I Hypersensitivity Reaction/severe hypersensitivity reaction is a contraindication.
  • Helminth infection needs to be treated prior to initiation.

Antibodies: Anti-IL-4 Receptor

Types and administration

  • Dupilumab (subcutaneous)

Mechanism of action and effects

  • Blocks IL-4 receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors
  • Through receptor Receptor Receptors are proteins located either on the surface of or within a cell that can bind to signaling molecules known as ligands (e.g., hormones) and cause some type of response within the cell. Receptors blockage, IL-4 and IL-13 with other cytokines Cytokines Non-antibody proteins secreted by inflammatory leukocytes and some non-leukocytic cells, that act as intercellular mediators. They differ from classical hormones in that they are produced by a number of tissue or cell types rather than by specialized glands. They generally act locally in a paracrine or autocrine rather than endocrine manner. Adaptive Immune Response are inhibited.

Clinical use

  • For severe eosinophilic asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma or oral-steroid asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma
  • Inadequately controlled asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma with eosinophil count ≥ 150 cells/μL 
  • Patient age: > 12 years
  • Other uses: atopic dermatitis Dermatitis Any inflammation of the skin. Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema), rhinosinusitis with nasal polyposis

Side effects

Precautions

  • Anaphylaxis Anaphylaxis An acute hypersensitivity reaction due to exposure to a previously encountered antigen. The reaction may include rapidly progressing urticaria, respiratory distress, vascular collapse, systemic shock, and death. Type I Hypersensitivity Reaction/severe hypersensitivity reaction is a contraindication.
  • Monitor for eosinophilia Eosinophilia Abnormal increase of eosinophils in the blood, tissues or organs. Autosomal Dominant Hyperimmunoglobulin E Syndrome and vasculitis Vasculitis Inflammation of any one of the blood vessels, including the arteries; veins; and rest of the vasculature system in the body. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.
  • May cause worsening eye symptoms ( conjunctivitis Conjunctivitis Conjunctivitis is a common inflammation of the bulbar and/or palpebral conjunctiva. It can be classified into infectious (mostly viral) and noninfectious conjunctivitis, which includes allergic causes. Patients commonly present with red eyes, increased tearing, burning, foreign body sensation, and photophobia. Conjunctivitis and keratitis Keratitis Inflammation of the cornea. Herpes Simplex Virus 1 and 2)
  • Helminth infection needs to be treated prior to initiation.

Clinical Relevance

Asthma Asthma Asthma is a chronic inflammatory respiratory condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction. The disease is believed to result from the complex interaction of host and environmental factors that increase disease predisposition, with inflammation causing symptoms and structural changes. Patients typically present with wheezing, cough, and dyspnea. Asthma medications are also used for the following conditions:

  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a lung disease characterized by progressive, largely irreversible airflow obstruction. The condition usually presents in middle-aged or elderly persons with a history of cigarette smoking. Signs and symptoms include prolonged expiration, wheezing, diminished breath sounds, progressive dyspnea, and chronic cough. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) ( COPD COPD Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a lung disease characterized by progressive, largely irreversible airflow obstruction. The condition usually presents in middle-aged or elderly persons with a history of cigarette smoking. Signs and symptoms include prolonged expiration, wheezing, diminished breath sounds, progressive dyspnea, and chronic cough. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)): a common chronic disease of the airways characterized by airflow limitation. Obstructive inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation is noted in the small airways, lung parenchyma, and pulmonary vasculature. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship usually present with dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea and chronic cough. Bronchodilators and corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis are part of the regimen for treating COPD COPD Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a lung disease characterized by progressive, largely irreversible airflow obstruction. The condition usually presents in middle-aged or elderly persons with a history of cigarette smoking. Signs and symptoms include prolonged expiration, wheezing, diminished breath sounds, progressive dyspnea, and chronic cough. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).
  • Eosinophilic granulomatous polyangiitis (EGPA): vasculitis Vasculitis Inflammation of any one of the blood vessels, including the arteries; veins; and rest of the vasculature system in the body. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus characterized by necrotizing granulomas Granulomas A relatively small nodular inflammatory lesion containing grouped mononuclear phagocytes, caused by infectious and noninfectious agents. Sarcoidosis, eosinophilia Eosinophilia Abnormal increase of eosinophils in the blood, tissues or organs. Autosomal Dominant Hyperimmunoglobulin E Syndrome, and eosinophilic tissue infiltration. The vasculitis Vasculitis Inflammation of any one of the blood vessels, including the arteries; veins; and rest of the vasculature system in the body. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus affects small- and medium-sized arteries Medium-Sized Arteries Kawasaki Disease. Multiple organs can be affected, including the pulmonary, renal, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and nervous system Nervous system The nervous system is a small and complex system that consists of an intricate network of neural cells (or neurons) and even more glial cells (for support and insulation). It is divided according to its anatomical components as well as its functional characteristics. The brain and spinal cord are referred to as the central nervous system, and the branches of nerves from these structures are referred to as the peripheral nervous system. Nervous System: Anatomy, Structure, and Classification. Among the treatments is mepolizumab.
  • Allergic rhinitis Allergic rhinitis An inflammation of the nasal mucosa triggered by allergens. Rhinitis: a condition characterized by rhinorrhea Rhinorrhea Excess nasal drainage. Respiratory Syncytial Virus, sneezing Sneezing The sudden, forceful, involuntary expulsion of air from the nose and mouth caused by irritation to the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract. Rhinovirus, and itching of nose Nose The nose is the human body’s primary organ of smell and functions as part of the upper respiratory system. The nose may be best known for inhaling oxygen and exhaling carbon dioxide, but it also contributes to other important functions, such as tasting. The anatomy of the nose can be divided into the external nose and the nasal cavity. Nose and Nasal Cavity: Anatomy, eyes, and palate Palate The palate is the structure that forms the roof of the mouth and floor of the nasal cavity. This structure is divided into soft and hard palates. Palate: Anatomy. Allergens trigger Trigger The type of signal that initiates the inspiratory phase by the ventilator Invasive Mechanical Ventilation an allergic nasal response where nasal mast cells Mast cells Granulated cells that are found in almost all tissues, most abundantly in the skin and the gastrointestinal tract. Like the basophils, mast cells contain large amounts of histamine and heparin. Unlike basophils, mast cells normally remain in the tissues and do not circulate in the blood. Mast cells, derived from the bone marrow stem cells, are regulated by the stem cell factor. Innate Immunity: Phagocytes and Antigen Presentation release histamine and other mediators. Corticosteroid nasal sprays are commonly prescribed. Other less-used therapies available include cromolyn nasal spray, ipratropium Ipratropium A muscarinic antagonist structurally related to atropine but often considered safer and more effective for inhalation use. It is used for various bronchial disorders, in rhinitis, and as an antiarrhythmic. Anticholinergic Drugs nasal spray, and montelukast.

References

  1. Bakakos, A., Loukides, S., Bakakos, P. (2019) Severe eosinophilic asthma. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6780074/
  2. Falk, N., Hughes, S. (2016) Medications for Chronic Asthma. Am Fam Physician 94(6):454-462. https://www.aafp.org/afp/2016/0915/p454.html#sec-7
  3. Fanta, C. (2020) An overview of asthma management in Wood, R., Bochner, B., Hollingsworth, TePas, E. UpToDate. Retrieved 17 Nov 2020 from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/an-overview-of-asthma-management
  4. Galanter J.M., & Boushey H.A. (2017). Drugs used in asthma. Katzung B.G.(Ed.), Basic & Clinical Pharmacology, 14e. McGraw-Hill.
  5. Greener, M. (2020). The importance of measuring biomarkers in asthma. Prescriber. 10.1002/psb.1869, 31, 10, (11-15). https://doi.org/10.1002/psb.1830
  6. Le, T., Bhushan, V. (2020) USMLE Step 1 2020.McGraw-Hill.
  7. Parada, N. (2019) The use of chromones (cromoglycates) in the treatment of asthma in Bochner, B., Hollingsworth. UpToDate. Retrieved 17 Nov 2020, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/the-use-of-chromones-cromoglycates-in-the-treatment-of-asthma
  8. Wenzel, S. (2020) Treatment of severe asthma in adolescents and adults in Bochner, B., Hollingsworth, H. UpToDate. Retrieved 18 Nov 2020 from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/treatment-of-severe-asthma-in-adolescents-and-adults

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