Doctors know that gastroesophageal reflux (GER) can bring on, or worsen, an asthma attack. So, if you can control the reflux with a relatively benign over-the-counter preparation, does this mean you can also take less of the more aggressive, prescription asthma drug?
This novel approach has been tested on 46 children, aged between 5 and 10 and, not surprisingly, it proved to be very effective.
The children had moderate asthma, which was being treated with bronchodilators, inhaled corticosteroids and antagonists - powerful drugs that come with their own side-effects.
Twenty-seven of the 46 children had GER, which was treated with dietary changes or drugs. In the following 12 months, the children used far less of their prescribed medication. Interestingly, even those children who had no signs of GER, but were nonetheless treated for it, also saw a dramatic reduction in their medication.
(Source: Chest, 2003; 123: 1008-13).