Researchers at National Jewish Health have shown that glucocorticoids, the primary controller medication for asthma, are 40 percent less effective in overweight and obese asthma patients than in those of normal weight.
The findings identify a potential mechanism involved in the resistance, which suggests therapeutic targets for future medications.
â€œThis study identifies what could be a significant issue for the 20 million Americans with asthma; specifically, the main controller medication might be less effective if you are overweight or obese,â€ said Dr. Sutherland.
â€œThese findings should spur doctors to carefully evaluate response to treatment in overweight and obese asthmatics and consider optimizing therapeutic regimens as indicated. We also hope they will spur additional research into the treatment of obese patients with asthma.â€
Nearly half of the people who suffer from asthma are classified as either overweight or obese, with a body mass index (BMI) of greater than 25.
An increasing body of literature suggests a connection between obesity and asthma. Obese people often have higher levels of inflammatory molecules in their bodies; asthma is characterized in part by inflamed airways.
Studies suggest that being overweight or obese increases asthma incidence and makes asthma more difficult to control.
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