In a recent study published in the journal CHEST, a team of researchers from the Department of Medicine at the Ottawa Hospital in Canada found that weight loss in obese adults with asthma can improve asthma severity, airway hyper responsiveness (AHR), asthma control, lung function, and quality of life. According to the researchers, these results support the need to actively pursue healthy weight-loss measures in this population.
In the study titled “Effects of Weight Loss on Airway Responsiveness in Obese Adults With Asthma: Does Weight Loss Lead to Reversibility of Asthma?” the researchers examined whether weight reduction reduces asthma severity in obese adults with asthma.
The study was prospective and 22 obese participants with asthma took part. From these, 16 participants followed a behavioral weight reduction program for 3 months, and six served as control subjects. The primary outcome was change in AHR over 3 months. Changes in lung function, asthma control, and quality of life were secondary outcomes.
The results revealed that the incidence of asthma was 1.47 times higher in obese people than nonobese people, and that a three-unit increase in body mass index was associated with a 35% increase in the risk of asthma.
“While previous studies have examined the relationship between asthma severity and obesity, this study is unique because of its strict adherence to an accurate diagnostic criteria and study outcome (AHR), resulting in purer results to support weight loss as a strategy to normalize or reverse asthma in this group of people hit very hard by the condition,” said in a recent news release Smita Pakhale, MD, Department of Medicine, The Ottawa Hospital and University of Ottawa. “We were pleased to see significant improvement in asthma symptoms, as well as quality of life for these individuals. This study further supports the need to manage comorbidities to improve patient lives,” she concluded.
The study was funded by the Department of Medicine, The Ottawa Hospital, and the Ontario Thoracic Society.
Glossary of Terms:
[wikibox lang=”en”]Airway hyper-responsiveness[/wikibox]