Inhaled Steroids Asthma and Bronchiectatis

Other than the (Eight Week) 'suck it and see' approach, does anyone know if there is an actual Test that can determine if you are the 'type' that Inhaled Steroids work well for - and what that Test is?

I'm at a point where I believe Inhaled Steroids are (a) Not actually helping much and (b) may be causing additional problems (I suspect I may have Bronchiectatis and will shortly be Tested to verify or discount it) . Note, unless critical for Asthma Treatment those with Bronchiectatis are, I gather, advised to avoid Inhaled Steroids).

Additionally, it seems to be the case that a certain group of people don't benefit much, if at all, from Inhaled Steroid use. Some of this 'group' cant avoid taking them anyway, because the inhaled steroid is included in their Dual Inhaler along with a Long Acting BETA Agonist.

Inhaled Steroids (by reducing Lung Inflammation) also reduce Asthma Flare ups and are - no doubt - great for those who do respond well to them. That said, they are not 'side-effect free', can cause chest irritation and have not been shown to improve lung function, or stop it getting worse.

So, back to the original question, is there an actual Test that can determine if you are definately the 'type' that Inhaled Steroids work well for - and what is that Test?

If I'm NOT the type they work for, there's little point in me taking them I guess.

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  • Hi I have never heard of a test for that. Steroids whether in an inhaler or pill form are a standard treatment for those with lung problems. I haven't heard of anyone they don't help either. I don't think there is such a type. Ok if you are really poorly then they might not help much but otherwise they should.

    It's only if you are on steroids over a certain amount daily that you will suffer from problems associated with them such as thin skin and easy bruising. However unless I have an infection the only steroids I use are the inhaled type. I have never had any skin problems or any side effects associated with this use. x

  • You can get an exhaled nitrogen test (FENO) which will tell you how much inflammation there is in your lungs. If you are using large amounts of steroids and still have a high reading it probably means the steroids are not working for you. Not all places do this, but any asthma centre will now probably offer it. It is really easy to do and does not take long.

    R

  • Thanks. Thanks thats probably about right. I've had a FeNO (very high -132) some months ago but not since taking additional Inhaled Steroids. Will need to get another one I guess.

  • Hi, the suck it and see approach sums it up! I used to find that if I asked how long to take inhaler before deciding whether it worked - the answer varied! I think the spirometry (spelling?) test gives some indication but they say allow time for the meds to enter your system. No quick fix I'm afraid. Good luck

  • My understanding is that some asthmatics can be 'steriod resistant' and interestingly I recently had a course of prednisolone that didn't seem to help a flare up of my asthma very much. I am reading around the subject currently but unfortunately don't know very much about it.

  • Thanks. Woul be interesting to know if some folk can be resistant to Inhaled steroids but not to oral steroids. Certainly oral steroids seem to improve my Peak Flow but I'm not sure that the inhaled steroids are helping much. Maybe check your Peak Flow when taking prednisolone. If it improves that may indicate whether the pills are having some effect.

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