Bronchial thermoplasty for severe asthma
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PURPOSE OF REVIEW: the present article will address the potential for bronchial thermoplasty to be used in addition to conventional medications to help us treat our patients with severe asthma. RECENT FINDINGS: two recently published studies report on the use of bronchial thermoplasty in patients with severe asthma. Now that patients with a range of asthma severity have been treated with bronchial thermoplasty, we are better able to comment on the appropriate selection of patients for this therapy that should optimize benefits and limit complications. In addition, studies reporting longer term follow-up are now available indicating the persistence of benefit and the absence of late developing adverse events. SUMMARY: bronchial thermoplasty represents a novel approach to asthma treatment that is complementary to anti-inflammatory and bronchodilating therapies. Criteria for selecting appropriate patients are established and experience with bronchial thermoplasty is expanding since US Food and Drug Administration approval was obtained in April 2010.
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