Avoid prescribing mucolytics in children with bronchial asthma.

Type of practice


Topic Area


Inflammation, mucosal edema and mucus hypersecretion increase the narrowing of the bronchial lumen with the formation of mucus plugs that worsen bronchial obstruction in patients with asthma. Studies conducted on the effectiveness of mucolytics to treat asthma and its exacerbations have demonstrated their poor effectiveness and the possibility of dangerous side effects. The most important International guidelines (GINA, ATS, BTS) don’t include mucolytics in the “management” of children with bronchial asthma. Mucolytics agents are also contraindicated under two years of age due to the risk of a substantial deterioration of respiratory function for a difficult bronchial drainage


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2. Balsamo R, Lanata L, Egan CG: Mucoactive drugs. Eur Respir Rev. 2010 Jun; 19(116): 127-33.
3. Aliyali M, Poorhasan Amiri A, Sharifpoor A, Zalli F: Effects of N-acetylcysteine on asthma exacerbation. Iran J Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2010 Jun; 9(2): 103-9.
4. Linee Guida GINA italiane 2013 http://www.ginasma.it.

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