Study group participants included Inhaled Budesonide group Vs. Usual Care group. Patients in the budesonide group received budesonide dry powder inhaler at a dose of 800 μg twice a day. Participants allocated budesonide were asked to stop taking the inhaler when they felt they had recovered or if they had a primary outcome (Covid-19 related urgent care visit, emergency department assessment or hospitalisation). Inhaled budesonide was taken for a median duration of 7 days in the study. • Usual care group was given supportive therapy, with the National Health Service (NHS) advising patients with Covid-19 symptoms to take antipyretics for symptoms of fever (products containing paracetamol, or non-steroidal anti-inflammatories such as aspirin and ibuprofen) and honey for symptoms of cough.
The study found that inhaled budesonide significantly reduced the risk of urgent care visit, emergency department assessment or hospitalisation by 91% in patients compared to those patients who received usual care. This relative reduction of 91% of clinical deterioration is equivalent to the efficacy seen after the use of Covid-19 vaccines and greater than that reported in any treatments used in hospitalised patients and patients with severe Covid-19. The Study findings also demonstrated a faster resolution of fever, a known marker for poor prognosis in Covid-19.
( Lancet Respir Med 2021, Published Online April 9, 2021)