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Systemic Corticosteroids in Patients With Bronchial Asthma: A Real-Life Study

Izquierdo JL1,2, Almonacid C3, Campos C2, Morena D2, Benavent M4, González-de-Olano D5, Rodríguez JM1,6

1Department of Medicine and Medical Specialties, University of Alcalá, Madrid, Spain
2Respiratory Medicine, University Hospital of Guadalajara, Guadalajara, Spain
3Respiratory Medicine, University Hospital of Toledo, Toledo, Spain
5Allergy Department, University Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Instituto Ramón y Cajal de Investigación Sanitaria, Madrid, Spain
6Respiratory Medicine, University Hospital Príncipe de Asturias, Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, Spain

J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2023; Vol 33(1) : 30-38
doi: 10.18176/jiaci.0765

Objective: The objective of the present study was to determine the use of systemic corticosteroids (SCs) in patients with bronchial asthma using big data analysis.
Methods: We performed an observational, retrospective, noninterventional study based on secondary data captured from free text in the electronic health records. This study was performed based on data from the regional health service of Castille-La Mancha (SESCAM), Spain. We performed the analysis using big data and artificial intelligence via Savana® Manager version 3.0.
Results: During the study period, 103 667 patients were diagnosed with and treated for asthma at different care levels. The search was restricted to patients aged 10 to 90 years (mean age, 43.5 [95%CI, 43.4-43.7] years). Of these, 59.8% were women. SCs were taken for treatment of asthma by 58 745 patients at some point during the study period. These patients were older, with a higher prevalence of hypertension, dyslipidemia, diabetes, obesity, depression, and hiatus hernia. SCs are used frequently in the general population with asthma (31.4% in 2015 and 39.6% in 2019). SCs were prescribed mainly in primary care (59%), allergy (13%), and pulmonology (20%). The frequency of prescription of SCs had a direct impact on the main associated adverse effects.
Conclusion: In clinical practice, SCs are frequently prescribed to patients with asthma, especially in primary care. Use of SCs is associated with a greater number of adverse events. It is necessary to implement measures to reduce prescription of SCs to patients with asthma, especially in primary care.

Key words: Asthma, Systemic corticosteroids, Big data, Artificial intelligence