[Immediate drug therapy of obstructive lung disease in hospital].
ABSTRACT We have studied how patients with obstructive lung disease are treated in Norwegian hospitals and whether the treatment is in accordance with international guidelines.
During 76 days from 1 April 1997 we registered all 176 patients (110 women) admitted for obstructive lung disease in two hospital catchment areas in western Norway. The medical treatment given the first three hours after admission was recorded by the doctors on call.
106 patients (60%) were above 65 years of age; 21 (12%) below 35.31% of the patients had a mild form of the disease, 42% a moderate, 21% a severe, and 6% a life-threatening condition. Almost all patients with moderate and severe disease were treated with beta 2 agonists on admission. Among the patients with moderate disease, 25% did not receive glucocorticoids during the first three hours in hospital. The proportion of patients treated with theophylline was lower among those with mild disease than among those with moderate disease (15% and 65% respectively).
Guidelines are followed to a high degree in patients with severe or life threatening obstructive lung disease, but only party in those with mild or moderate disease.