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Respir Med. 2004 Feb;98(2):134-8.

Long-term montelukast therapy in moderate to severe COPD--a preliminary observation.

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Department of Medicine (MIC 719), College of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, 840 South Wood Street, Room 173, Chicago, IL 60612-7323, USA.


The purpose of this retrospective study was to determine the effects of long-term treatment with montelukast on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) control in a cohort of patients with moderate to severe COPD. The medical records of 20 consecutive male patients (18 African-Americans) aged 71.2 +/- 10.7 years diagnosed with moderate to severe COPD at the VA Chicago Health Care System, Chicago, Illinois, USA, and treated with oral montelukast, 10 mg every night, for 23.6 +/- 7.3 months were reviewed. Information on demographics and COPD control was extracted from each record. In each patient, a comparable follow-up period in the clinic before and after initiating montelukast therapy was reviewed and tabulated so each patient served as his own control. There was a significant improvement in complaints of shortness of breath, sputum production wheezing and nocturnal symptoms during the observation period (P < 0.05). There was a significant reduction in the use of oral and inhaled corticosteroids, inhaled bronchodilators and supplemental oxygen (P < 0.05). In addition, there was a significant reduction in the number of visits to the emergency department, number of hospitalizations and duration of hospitalizations for acute exacerbations of COPD (P < 0.05). No significant changes in FEV1 (% predicted), FEV1/FVC ratio (% predicted) and peak expiratory flow rate were recorded during this time. No side effects where reported during the observation period and no patient discontinued the medication. Collectively, these data suggest that long-term treatment with montelukast is safe and improves COPD control in elderly patients with moderate to severe COPD.

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