Breathing Easier and Half of Prescriptions

A study shows 50 percent reduction in prescription breathing medications after bariatric surgery. “Not only do patients breathe easier, less money is spent on prescription health care costs,” said lead author Naveen Sikka. “Better quality of life, possible reduction of chronic breathing problems, including asthma, and lower health care costs significantly benefit patients and help to reduce the national health care crisis.”

The retrospective study reviewed health records of 320 bariatric surgery patients at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit in the USA, for one year before and after the procedure. Prescription medication fill rates were determined from patient prescription claims. A total of 324 prescriptions were filled before surgery as compared with 154 after surgery.

“Some obese patients develop asthma, while others are treated for breathing problems with medications typically used for asthma,” said Andrew Weinstein, Asthma and Respiratory Disease Committee vice-chair of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. “The results of this study bring us closer to determining if weight loss can improve asthma long-term.”; Source: American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI)