Adults and children who need an inhaled corticosteroid for chronic asthma should be offered the cheapest product on the market, recommend new National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines.
The NICE board have concluded that inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) are a good use of NHS resources and an effective means of controlling asthma symptoms.
For those who need both an ICS and a long-acting beta-2 agonist, a combination device should be recommended.
But the decision to recommend two separate agents or a combined treatment should be made on an individual basis, taking into account the likelihood of treatment adherence and individual needs.
NICE Clinical and Public Health Director Peter Littlejohns said: “Asthma usually develops in childhood but may start at any age. Poorly controlled asthma can have a significant impact on the quality of life of the affected person and their family.
“Where appropriate the least costly inhaled corticosteroid product that can be used effectively by an individual should be chosen.”