The study, which was published in the academic journal, the European Respiratory Journal , was led by Sarah Brode, PhD, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Toronto, Canada. Using existing data collected on 417,494 people aged 66 and older in Ontario, Canada, Dr. Brode’s team discovered that people who had been prescribed inhaled corticosteroids for the treatment of either asthma or COPD experienced 2,966 cases of nontuberculous myocobacteria (NTB). The association was particularly strong in patients who were using the corticosteroid fluticasone , an ingredient in the allergy medication, Flonase . The risk seemed to be lower for patients using the corticosteroid, budesonide .
If you have a serious asthma attack (exacerbation), your doctor may prescribe a short course of oral c orticosteroids. When used orally for less than two weeks, the side effects of corticosteroids are less likely, but when used for many months, they can have a serious and permanent effect. After the severe symptoms of your asthma attack have been successfully treated and controlled, your doctor will work with you to minimize your need for prednisone in the future. Faithfully taking an inhaled corticosteroid every day is the most commonly successful method to do this.
Q. Do I need to go through all the patient records on the PMR system for the last 6 months and identify any patients who have been prescribed more than 6 short acting bronchodilator inhalers without a corticosteroid inhaler within a 6-month period to meet this criterion?
No. Contractors do not need to have reviewed 6 months of patient records to meet this criterion. On the day of the review the pharmacy must be able to show evidence of the asthma patients, for whom more than 6 short acting bronchodilator inhalers were dispensed without any corticosteroid inhaler within a 6-month period, that have been referred to an appropriate health care professional for an asthma review. There must, therefore, be a process in place, to identify these asthma patients. This process can be incorporated into daily practice (PSNC has suggested a process for referring patients for an asthma review).