New evidence suggests treating COPD with both inhaled corticosteroids and long-acting bronchodilators may reduce mortality risk.

A new study that appears in the Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease analyzed whether adding inhaled corticosteroids to long-acting bronchodilator therapy reduces mortality, and it did provide evidence that this addition may prevent deaths.

The researchers identified a cohort of 18,615 adult patients discharged from a hospital with a COPD diagnosis between 2006 and 2009.

Participants included patients defined as new long-acting bronchodilator users or those also on inhaled corticosteroids who were classified as “LB alone” or “LB+ICS” initiators.

The researchers recorded occurrence of out-of-hospital exacerbations in the 6 months preceding follow-up to identify patients with potential greater susceptibility to exacerbation.

Among the participants, 12,207 initiated “LB+ICS” therapy, and 6408 used “LB alone.”

In the monotherapy arm of the study, 143 patients (2.23%) died. In the combination arm, 110 patients (0.9%) died, and the mortality reduction was more pronounced in those who experienced frequent COPD exacerbations.

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