The Single combination budesonide-formoterol inhaler Maintenance And Reliever Therapy (SMART) regimen had a favorable risk-to-benefit profile and can be recommended for use in some adults at risk of severe asthma exacerbations, according to a clinical study by researchers at the Medical Research Institute of New Zealand in Wellington.

Those with moderate to severe asthma using the SMART regime had fewer attacks than those on two separate inhalers, according to results.

For the study, 303 patients were randomly assigned to the single-inhaler protocol or to usual care with two inhalers. They found that patients using the combination inhaler reduced their overuse of corticosteroid by 40%, compared to those using separate inhalers. This despite the fact that those in the SMART program took in more corticosteroids a day; because they experienced fewer asthma attacks, their overall exposure to corticosteroid was the same as for people in the two-inhaler group, according to researchers.