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Asthma: Is chronic propranolol safe, beneficial?

KEY POINT

In a small study of adults with stable mild-to-moderate asthma, administering propranolol for 6 to 8 weeks did not worsen patients’ response to methacholine challenge or result in significant differences in patient-reported asthma control, quality of life, or reliever medication use, as compared to placebo. Study participants were closely monitored and received standard asthma therapy plus tiotropium (Spiriva—Boehringer Ingelheim, Pfizer) during propranolol titration; non-selective beta blockers are contraindicated in patients with asthma.

SOURCES

Short PM et al. Randomized placebo-controlled trial to evaluate chronic dosing effects of propranolol in asthma. Am J Resp Crit Care Med. 2013;187:1308–14.