UH Rainbow Announces New Asthma Treatment Guidelines
UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s asthma team is announcing major changes to how we are treating children with asthma. These changes are based on new national and international pediatric and adult asthma guidelines. These guidelines were developed by asthma experts from across the world, including experts from UH Rainbow.
The old way of using asthma medication is still effective, but research studies from the last 20 years indicate that this new treatment strategy should improve how well the medications control asthma symptoms. For some patients the new way will also be simpler and easier.
The way albuterol and steroid inhalers and combination inhalers will be used for asthma treatment is likely to have major changes for many patients, but not for all patients:
- Some patients might only use a combination inhaler and never use albuterol
- Some patients taking a daily steroid inhaler might change to using the steroid inhaler less often, or just when they take albuterol
What You Need to Do
- Make sure you understand the difference between these three kinds of inhalers and ask your asthma doctor or nurse if you have any questions:
- Fast-acting albuterol inhaler: Albuterol HFA, ProAir, Ventolin HFA, Xopenex HFA
- Steroid inhaler: examples include QVAR, Flovent, Asmanex, and Alvesco
- Combination inhaler: examples include Dulera and Symbicort
- Make sure you know how to use your inhaler correctly. Nebulizers will not be part of the asthma treatment plan for almost all patients.
- If your school, pharmacy, pediatrician’s office, emergency room or insurance company has questions or concerns about this change in asthma treatment, please contact your asthma nurse or doctor.
- Be ready: we expect this asthma treatment change to start happening at your next visit.
UH Rainbow’s pediatric asthma specialists are waiting for final agreement from the national guideline group but we are already working on the best plan to bring these new changes to all of our patients quickly and in a way that is clear, concise, and is completely understood by every patient.
Since these changes in treatment plan will be brand new, we expect that emergency rooms, schools, pharmacies, insurance companies, and many physicians who are not pediatric asthma specialists may take many months or longer to become familiar with this new way of treatment.
For more information about the new asthma treatment recommendations, please refer to these resources:
If you have questions about these new asthma treatment guidelines, please contact your asthma doctor or nurse.