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Nitric oxide monitoring of no added value for children with asthma

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Nitric Oxide monitoring does not help most children with asthma, despite being an indicator of worsening symptoms, according to Dutch researchers.

They randomised 151 children with mild to moderate asthma to one of two 30-week monitoring courses – one group had daily monitoring of their fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) plus symptoms, while the other only had symptoms monitored.

The child’s medication was adjusted according to the results of the monitoring which were reported every three weeks by parents via phone.

Both groups enjoyed an impressive overall improvement in symptoms, suggesting considerable benefit of frequent monitoring. However, there were no significant differences between the two groups, said the authors from the Erasmus University Medical Centre-Sophia Children's Hospital in the Netherlands.

‘We speculate that daily supervision and frequent phone contacts have produced an improvement that could not be beaten by additional monitoring of FeNO,’ they said.

American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine (2009) 179: 93-97

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