Twenty-six children with asthma were treated with beclomethasone dipropionate aerosol in a dose adjusted to their symptoms for 13 to 20 months. 18 children in the group had been taking systemic steroids at the start of the trial and all were successfully weaned off them, mostly within 2 months. All but 1 of the children were satisfactorily controlled by beclomethasone, but 15 children needed short courses of oral steroids at times of severe exacerbations.
There was no evidence of either suppression or acceleration of growth, nor was there any adrenal suppression as assessed at intervals by the estimation of the resting level of plasma cortisol and the response to tetracosactrin. No other side effects were encountered apart from exacerbations of eczema or rhinitis in some children previously on systemic steroids.
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