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Long-acting β2-agonists (LABA) in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: efficacy and safety

Authors Andrea Rossi, Sonia Khirani, Mario Cazzola

Published 5 December 2008 Volume 2008:3(4) Pages 521—529

DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/COPD.S1353

Andrea Rossi1, Sonia Khirani1, Mario Cazzola2

1Unit of Respiratory Diseases, Hospital of Bergamo, Bergamo, Italy; 2Unit of Respiratory Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Rome ‘Tor Vergata’, Rome, Italy

Abstract: COPD is characterized by progressive airflow obstruction which does not fully reverse to inhaled or oral pharmacotherapy. The management of patients with COPD has taken a totally new direction over the past 20 years, thank to the use of novel therapies aimed to improve and modify the natural history of COPD. Long-acting bronchodilators, including long-acting β2-agonists (LABAs), were introduced several years ago in order to enhance improvements in lung function, health status related quality of life, and reduce the rate of exacerbations. These effects can be boosted by the combination of LABAs with long-acting anticholinergic, and/or with inhaled corticosteroids. Inhaled LABAs are commonly well tolerated although adverse effects such as tremor and palpitations are occasionally troublesome.

Keywords: LABA, COPD, efficacy, safety

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