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article imageSteroids Don't Help Viral Infections in Kids

By KJ Mullins     Jan 21, 2009 in Health
Researchers have discovered the wheezing and steroids don't mix when it comes to children. Two studies show that steroids do not change the course of viral infections in children.
The researchers tested 700 children aged 10 months to 5 years old. The study showed that children stayed in hospital the same amount of time regardless if they had steroids or not from viral infections that caused wheezing.
At this time doctors treat wheezing from infections the same as they do in asthmatic children.
The study also showed that steroids didn't change the symptoms over the following seven days.
Reuters reports:
"If your child is very sick, it doesn't mean you shouldn't give oral steroids. But in the general run of things, for most kids at home or presenting to their doctor with moderate wheezing that doesn't require many days in the hospital, steroids are not going to be of any benefit,"
Dr. Jonathan Grigg of Queen Mary University in London said in a telephone interview.
"I would have loved for steroids to work," Grigg added.
A second study compared the use of GlaxoSmithKline's Flovent and a placebo in 129 children aged 1 to 6. The children were given one of the two at the first sign of nasal congestion, sore throat or any other symptom that might show an upper respiratory tract infection was coming on. The children received the treatment for up to 10 days twice daily. The drug seemed to help.
Eighteen percent of the children in the placebo group had to have additional steroid drugs. The children that had used Flovent needing the additional medication was at eight percent.
The children using Flovent grew less though than the ones in the placebo group.
More about Viral infections, Studies, Steroids
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