September 4, 1972

Corticosteroids in Croup

Author Affiliations

Tripler Army Medical Center Honolulu

JAMA. 1972;221(10):1164. doi:10.1001/jama.1972.03200230050019

To the Editor.—  There is considerable controversy concerning the use of corticosteroids in the treatment of croup.1-3 Eden and associates have conducted two double-blind studies evaluating the effectiveness of these drugs in the treatment of this disorder and were unable to show any significant benefit in patients treated with corticosteroids when compared to controls treated with placebo.4,5 In both reports, the author advised that although he was unable to show any benefit resulting from this form of therapy, further studies are indicated before it can be concluded that they are ineffective.Indeed, a review of the literature, including all double-blind, controlled studies published to date on this subject, reveals that most6-8 have shown a statistically significant benefit in several clinical measurements. The dosages of steroids used in those studies showing a positive effect were generally higher than those used by Eden, but duration of therapy was similar,