The use of steroid inhalers increases the risk of hard-to-treat bacterial infection among older people, a new study published in the European Respiratory Journal suggested. While steroid inhalers are used to help manage the symptoms of asthma and/or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), researchers from the European Respiratory Society found that they also make users more susceptible to lung infections caused by nontuberculous mycobacteria.
For their study, the researchers pored through linked laboratory and health administrative databases in Canada to look for cases of adults aged 66 or older who had been prescribed medication for obstructive lung disease.
They found 417,494 older adults who fit their exact specifications. Of those patients, the researchers uncovered 2,966 people who had been diagnosed with nontuberculous mycobacterial pulmonary disease and 327 who had been diagnosed with tuberculosis.
People using inhalers 2x as likely to have lung disease
From here, the researchers went on to find out whether these patients used steroid inhalers, what type of steroid inhalers they took, and how frequently they used their steroid inhalers. Patients who were using steroid inhalers were twice as likely to be diagnosed with nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease, the researchers discovered. Prolonged steroid inhaler use was associated with increased risk as well. Moreover, they noted that one particular type of steroid, fluticasone, was especially risky.
“These infections are not particularly common but they are chronic and difficult to treat, and are associated with an increased risk of death. Treatment typically requires at least three antibiotics given for longer than a year and this can still fail to tackle the infection,” said lead researcher Dr. Sarah K. Brode.
Along with her colleagues, Dr. Brode intends on continuing their efforts with this group of patients by investigating possible treatments against nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease.
What is nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease?
Nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease is the general term for a group of disorders caused by exposure to mycobacteria, which are rod-shaped bacterial germs usually found in the environment. The most common type of mycobacteria cause tuberculosis and leprosy, with “nontuberculous” being used to differentiate between disorders.
The symptoms and severity of nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease varies from person to person, though the exact mechanism behind this remains unknown. Chronic lung infection occurs in 94 percent of individuals diagnosed with nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease. Individuals with this disorder are known to display symptoms typically synonymous with other respiratory infections, such as excessive mucus production, shortness of breath, coughing up of blood, and unintended weight loss.
Mycobacterial exposure only causes certain people to become sick, and the underlying reason has yet to be determined. One theory posits that immune system deficiencies make particular individuals more likely to develop nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease.
The connection between steroid inhalers and nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease
This could very well be the case with the patients covered in this study. When high doses of inhaled steroids enter the body, small amounts of the medicine is absorbed into the immune system and suppress it, which can then cause this particular system to function poorer than usual. Though this effect is often concentrated in the lungs, as this is how inhaled steroids help patients control the symptoms of asthma. Inhaled steroids mimic adrenal gland hormones that help suppress inflammation, and end up suppressing the immune system in the process.
Currently, treating nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease is a momentous challenge as the antiobiotic drugs prescribed in the drug regimen are expensive, often poorly tolerated by the patients, and need the patients to remain on these medications for long periods of time.
Breakfast, blood sugar, & inflammation
Recent research has shown that Inflammation is responsible for 7 out of 10 Deaths in the United States. But it doesn’t have to be the same way for you.
In fact, in a fairly short amount of time, you could start to experience better sleep…less stomach issues…more energy and stamina…less muscle and joint pain…a drop in weight…lower stress levels…and much, much more!
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Did you know that one of the best times to stretch is right before bed? However…
What stretches should you do? Here’s a 1-minute stretch routine you can do before bed...
Lisa, Yoga Coach
eatlocalgrown / wisemindhealthybody
...easy, 3-minute exercise that completely cured his horrendous snoring! We can both finally sleep!
Today is a good day. Tonight will be even better. Why?
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Did you know that your bodyfat can become "calorie-resistant"?
True. And it's completely unaffected by even the strictest diets... and most intense exercises.
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To your health!
PS - Studies show that it can also reduce your risk of diabetes by 53.7%, a heart attack by 83.3% and stroke by 51.4%. Here's more of the scientific proof...
I bet you can’t guess which muscle in your body is the #1 muscle that eliminates joint and back pain, anxiety and looking fat. This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
If this “hidden” most powerful primal muscle is healthy, we are healthy.
d) Hip Flexors
Take the quiz above and see if you got the correct answer!
In April, 2009, researchers stunned the medical community when they reported chronic inflammation as the root cause of several major diseases.
See, every year 610,000 people in the U.S. die of heart disease. Cancer claims another 584,000...stroke 130,000...Alzheimer's disease nearly 85,000 — and the list goes on.
Truth is, we now know... chronic inflammation is responsible for 7 out of the top 10 leading causes of death in the United States! Hundreds of studies and scientific reviews prove it.
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Over the past year, my friend Dave over at PaleoHacks has been working on a super secret cookbook project with our good friend Peter Servold a Le Cordon Bleu trained Chef and owner of Pete's Paleo...
And today, this new incredible Paleo Cookbook is finally available to be shipped right to your door for FREE!
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Sponsored Health Resources
In the years that I've been working on this website project I've come across some amazing resources by some very special people. I'd like to share them with you here.
NOTE: I update these links often so please check back to see what's new!
1) Everyone knows green smoothies are healthy right? Have you heard of a “red” smoothie? If not, check out this story…
2) Forget what you've read about 10-day lemonade cleanses, 7-day detoxes with green juices and Gwyneth's gruel. All you need to do, and this is perfect for Saturday or or anytime really, is a simple 1-day cleanse.
3) This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
4) I thought it was virtually impossible for a website to be able to tell me anything even a little bit insightful after only submitting my name and date of birth... I was wrong!
5) Turmeric is amazing. The problem is - It's hard to absorb!
6) Wonder why your stomach still sticks out even though you're hammering the core exercises every day? It's a common myth that bulging belly is due to weak abdominal muscles.
7) Even if you're the most active of athletes, you may still suffer from tight hip flexors due to the amount of time you spend each day planted to a chair.
Enjoy! Let me know how these work out for you. And if you run across anything I've missed please let me know.