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December 26, 2001

Salmeterol and Inhaled Corticosteroids in Patients With Persistent Asthma

Author Affiliations

Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorJody W.ZylkeMD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2001;286(24):3075-3078. doi:10.1001/jama.286.24.3075

To the Editor: Dr Lemanske and colleagues1 concluded that the addition of salmeterol to ICs may improve overall asthma control. Unfortunately, its second conclusion, that salmeterol may safely facilitate halving the dose of IC, is not entirely supported by the data.

For the primary outcome variable, the overall number of treatment failures during the reduction and elimination phases, results were similar comparing the placebo-minus (47%) and salmeterol-minus (43%) groups. In other words, the addition of salmeterol made no clinically relevant impact over the 16-week study period.