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Nasal polyps in patients with asthma: prevalence, impact, and management challenges

Authors Langdon C, Mullol J

Received 1 October 2015

Accepted for publication 5 January 2016

Published 14 March 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 45—53


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Amrita Dosanjh

Cristobal Langdon,1,2 Joaquim Mullol1–3

1Rhinology Unit and Smell Clinic, Otorhinolaryngology Department, Hospital Clínic, 2Clinical and Experimental Respiratory Immunoallergy (IRCE), Institut d'Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer (IDIBAPS), 3Centre for Biomedical Research in Respiratory Diseases (CIBERES), Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain

Abstract: Patients with chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps (CRSwNP) often have coexisting asthma under the concept of “United Airway Disease”, being the combination of both diseases, which is one of the most challenging phenotypes to treat. Although clinicians have recognized this difficult-to-treat phenotype for many years, it remained poorly characterized. There is increasing epidemiological evidence linking chronic rhinosinusitis and asthma, but a good understanding of the pathophysiology and the combined management is still lacking. Bronchial asthma is more prevalent in patients who suffer chronic rhinosinusitis, while asthmatic patients have a greater prevalence of CRSwNP than patients without asthma. The effect of CRSwNP treatment, whether medical or surgical, in asthma is today less controversial after some studies have shown improvement of asthma after medical and/or surgical treatment of CRSwNP. However, direct comparisons between surgical and medical treatments are limited. Further randomized clinical trials are, however, still needed to better understand the management when both asthma and CRSwNP occur together. This review aims at summarizing the prevalence, impact, and management challenges regarding both asthma and CRSwNP.

Keywords: chronic rhinosinusitis, asthma, united airways, rhinosinusitis, corticosteroids, sinus surgery

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