The effects of 2, 10, and 20 mg of sodium cromoglycate delivered by aerosol were compared with those of placebo in a double blind study in 11 patients with extrinsic and exercise induced asthma. The effect of nebulised sodium cromoglycate delivered through a Wright nebuliser (estimated dose 12 mg) was also studied. Patients exercised on a treadmill for six to eight minutes at submaximal work loads on five days, 30 minutes after inhaling placebo or sodium cromoglycate. The FEV1 was recorded before treatment, before exercise, and up to 30 minutes after exercise. Mean baseline values of FEV1 before and after placebo or sodium cromoglycate did not differ significantly on the five days. After exercise the mean (SEM) maximal percentage fall in FEV1 after placebo; 12 mg sodium cromoglycate nebuliser solution; and 2, 10, and 20 mg sodium cromoglycate aerosol were 31.1 (3.8); 9.4 (2.1); and 19.4 (4.6), 13.7 (3.5), and 9.4 (1.9). Sodium cromoglycate inhibited exercise induced asthma at all doses used; the protective effect of the aerosol increased from 2 to 20 mg. The protective effect of 20 mg sodium cromoglycate aerosol was similar to that seen with 12 mg nebulised solution. Our results suggest that the effect of sodium cromoglycate aerosol in exercise induced asthma is dose related.
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