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Improvement of otitis media with effusion after treatment of asthma with leukotriene antagonists in children with co-existing disease.

Author(s): Balatsouras DG, Eliopoulos P, Rallis E, Sterpi P, Korres S, Ferekidis E

Affiliation(s): Department of Otolaryngology, Tzanion General Hospital, Piraeus, Greece.

Publication date & source: 2005, Drugs Exp Clin Res., 31 Suppl:7-10.

Publication type: Clinical Trial

Otitis media with effusion (OME) is a common pediatric disease and there is great controversy concerning its management. Mechanical, medical and surgical treatments have not proven adequate in resolving the disease and serve mainly to manage complications. Leukotriene inhibitors are new drugs that have been approved recently for the treatment of asthma in children. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of leukotriene inhibitor therapy for asthma on the clinical course of OME in children with co-existing disease. Fifty children with bilateral OME and asthma, divided equally into two groups, were studied. The children in the first group were treated with budesonide and terbutaline inhalers together with the leukotriene inhibitor montelukast, whereas the children in the second group were treated with the inhalers alone. Duration of treatment was 30 days. Pneumatic otoscopy, tympanometry and pure-tone audiometry were performed at the beginning and at the end of treatment. Fifteen (60%) of the children receiving inhalers and montelukast and nine (36%) of those receiving only inhalers were found free of OME after 30 days of therapy. Thus, it may be concluded that a statistically significant beneficial effect on the clinical course of OME resulted from the addition of montelukast to the treatment of children with co-existing asthma and OME. Given that no medication has been shown to be effective in OME therapy, further investigation of the possible effects of leukotriene inhibitors is warranted.

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