Updated asthma care guidelines have recently been released. This review will focus on several elements in the Expert Panel Report (EPR) 3 guidelines that reflect substantial differences compared with recommendations of the EPR2 guidelines, issued in 1997 and updated in 2002. A major difference is the emphasis on asthma control. The revised paradigm for asthma management now recommends that asthma management decisions should be initially based on categorization of asthma severity, and subsequently on assessment of asthma control. Asthma control can be assessed serially by use of validated instruments. The goal of asthma therapy is to achieve asthma control by reducing current impairment and future risk. Recommendations for asthma pharmacotherapy have also been revised since release of updated EPR2 guidelines. The revisions in asthma management proposed in these guidelines offer the potential for improved normative care outcomes in asthmatic patients in the United States.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Exercise-induced (EI) hypersensitivity disorders are significant problems for both recreational and competitive athletes. These include EI-asthma, EI-bronchoconstriction, EI-rhinitis, EI-anaphylaxis and EI-urticaria. A group of experts from the European Academy of Allergology and Clinical Immunology and the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology met to discuss the pathogenesis of these disorders and how to diagnose and treat them, and then to develop a consensus report. Key words (exercise with asthma, bronchoconstriction, rhinitis, urticaria or anaphylaxis) were used to search Medline, the Cochrane database and related websites through February 2008 to obtain pertinent information which, along with personal reference databases and institutional experience with these disorders, were used to develop this report. The goal is to provide physicians with guidance in the diagnosis, understanding and management of EI-hypersensitivity disorders to enable their patients to safely return to exercise-related activities.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Global Initiative on Asthma (GINA) was launched in 1993 in collaboration with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, the National Institutes of Health (USA) and the WHO. Its first effort was the production of a consensus report on asthma treatment, which aimed to bridge the gap between the various treatment options and the incorporation and implementation of innovative treatment forms into daily clinical practice. The first report published in 1995, A Global Strategy for Asthma Management and Prevention, has been translated into several languages, widely adopted and provided the foundation for several asthma guidelines worldwide. The GINA and other guidelines were primarily based on consensus of expert opinion in order to employ a severity-based classification system as a guide to treatment. However, in the late 1990s, guidelines underwent a major paradigm shift from opinion- to evidence-based classification as the foundation for asthma management. A second major shift involved the classification of asthma according to the level of disease control as a guide to treatment, which was realized for the first time in the revised 2006 GINA guidelines. Since their first appearance, asthma guidelines have played a leading role in disseminating information about asthma. In addition, they have had a substantial impact on standardizing asthma care around the world, which is likely to continue in the future. This article addresses the history of guideline development and issues related to asthma guidelines, with particular emphasis on the GINA guidelines.
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