Because of these side effects, doctors frequently choose safer medications, such as the 5-ASA drugs and antibiotics, as initial therapy. But there are a number of ways to reduce the risk of developing side effects. These include rapid but careful tapering off of steroids; alternate-day dosing; rectally applied corticosteroids; and rapidly metabolized corticosteroids such as budesonide (described above). To help prevent osteoporosis, many doctors routinely prescribe calcium supplements as well as multivitamins that contain vitamin D. Another option is the use of bisphosphonates, such as risedronate (Actonel®) and alendronate (Fosamax®). These compounds, which have been shown to help avert bone loss, are effective in treating and preventing steroid-induced osteoporosis.
mg/day inhaled via jet nebulizer either once daily or divided into 2 doses. The maximum manufacturer recommended total dose is 1 mg/day. The National Asthma Education and Prevention Program Expert Panel defines low dose therapy for budesonide inhalation suspension as mg/day, medium dose therapy as 1 mg/day, and high dose therapy as 2 mg/day for children ages 5 to 11 years. Titrate to the lowest effective dose once asthma stability is achieved. Prolonged use of high doses, ., 2 mg/day, may be associated with additional adverse effects.
In a study of asthmatic children 5 to 12 years of age, those treated with budesonide administered via a dry powder inhaler 200 mcg twice daily (n=311) had a -centimeter reduction in growth compared with those receiving placebo (n=418) at the end of one year; the difference between these two treatment groups did not increase further over three years of additional treatment. By the end of four years, children treated with the budesonide dry powder inhaler and children treated with placebo had similar growth velocities. Conclusions drawn from this study may be confounded by the unequal use of corticosteroids in the treatment groups and inclusion of data from patients attaining puberty during the course of the study.