Research Roundup

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Debbie Rigby rounds up the latest in research news

Vitamin D supplementation to prevent asthma exacerbations

A systematic review and meta-analysis of individual participant data (n=955) has concluded that Vitamin D supplementation reduces the rate of asthma exacerbations requiring treatment with systemic corticosteroids among all participants. The protective effects were seen in participants with baseline 25(OH)D of less than 25 nmol/L.

Lancet Respir Med 2017, Published Online October 3, 2017.


Vitamin D for the Management of Asthma

A Cochrane review of 9 RCTs (n=1093) shows that vitamin D supplementation decreased asthma exacerbations requiring systemic corticosteroids, decreased emergency department visits and hospitalisations. Vitamin D had no effect on daily asthma symptom control, the use of inhaled beta agonists, predicted FEV1, peak expiratory flow rate, or the incidence of serious adverse events.

Am Fam Physician. 2017;96(5):290-291.


Gabapentin, opioids, and the risk of opioid-related death

In this study patients receiving prescription opioids, concomitant treatment with gabapentin were associated with a substantial increase in the risk of opioid-related death. Concomitant gabapentin and opioid exposure was associated with a 49% higher risk of dying from an opioid overdose. Moderate to high doses of gabapentin were associated with a nearly a 60% increase in opioid-related deaths.

PLOS Medicine 2017.

Medscape summary


Benefits and safety of gabapentinoids in chronic low back pain

A systematic review and meta-analysis of 8 randomized controlled trials has concluded there is limited evidence on the use of gabapentinoids (pregabalin, gabapentin) in chronic lower back pain. Compared with placebo, dizziness, fatigue, difficulties with mentation and visual disturbances are common, with number needed to harm (NNH) of 7, 8, 6 and 6, respectively.

PLoS Med 14(8): e1002369.


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