Background: Inhaled corticosteroid therapy in severe persistent asthma has been shown to reduce or eliminate oral corticosteroid (OCS) use while retaining effective asthma control.
Objective: We sought to evaluate the ability of mometasone furoate (MF) delivered by means of dry powder inhaler to reduce daily oral prednisone requirements in OCS-dependent patients with severe persistent asthma.
Methods: We performed a 12-week, double-blind, placebocontrolled trial (21 centers, 132 patients) comparing 2 doses of MF (400 and 800 microg administered twice daily) with placebo, followed by a 9-month open-label phase in which 128 patients received treatment with MF.
Results: At the endpoint of the double-blind trial, MF 400 and 800 mg twice daily reduced daily OCS requirements by 46.0% and 23.9%, respectively, whereas placebo increased OCS requirements by 164.4% (P <.01). Oral steroids were eliminated in 40%, 37%, and 0% of patients in the MF 400 and 800 mg twice daily and placebo groups, respectively. Pulmonary function and quality of life significantly increased for MF-treated patients. Further reductions in OCS requirements were achieved with long-term MF treatment in the open-label phase.
Conclusion: MF inhaled orally as a dry powder is an effective alternative to systemic corticosteroids in patients with severe persistent asthma.