A new study has found that patients with mild or well-controlled asthma who experience symptoms 2 days a week or less, can experience significantly better day-to-day lung function from regular treatment from low dose ICS.

The study, by the Woolcock Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, showed a reduction in the risk of future adverse outcomes.

Current emphasis on asthma treatment for mild sufferers focuses on controlling symptoms and does not endorse the use of ICS treatment.

Results proved that lung function can actually be improved in mild asthmatics, negating the belief that asthma sufferers have a “ceiling” for the functionality of their lungs. Even patients whose lung function was over 90% of predicted normal value may have room to further improve with treatment.

“In recent years the emphasis in asthma treatment has been on how well a patient’s symptoms are controlled,” says asssociate professor Helen Reddel, the study’s lead researcher. “For those participants receiving ICS during the study, their lung function was better, they had less airway inflammation and less airway twitchiness. All of these things are predictors of reduction in risk of future adverse outcomes.”

The study can be found in the March edition of Primary Care Respiratory Journal.