Ten patients with exercise induced asthma, in whom inhaled nedocromil sodium 4 mg by metered dose inhaler attenuated the exercise fall in forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) by at least 40%, participated in a double blind dose response study to compare the protective effect of nedocromil sodium given 15 minutes before exercise challenge via a nebuliser (Wright) in concentrations of 0.5, 5, 10, and 20 mg/ml with that of placebo (saline). Response was assessed as the maximum fall in FEV1 after the patient had run on a treadmill for six to eight minutes. Plasma concentrations of nedocromil sodium were measured at the time of challenge. After exercise challenge the mean (SEM) maximum percentage falls in FEV1 were 30.3 (1.6) for the control run and 28.0 (4.1) after placebo. The percentage fall was attenuated by pretreatment with all concentrations of nedocromil sodium to 12.8 (2.8), 11.2 (2.1), 12.8 (2.1), and 14.1 (3.5) for the 0.5, 5, 10, and 20 mg/ml concentrations respectively (p less than 0.001). There were no significant differences between the different nedocromil concentrations. Mean plasma concentrations of nedocromil were proportional to dose. Thus concentrations of nebulised nedocromil sodium that ranged from 0.5 to 20 mg/ml gave a similar degree of protection (50-60%) against exercise induced asthma. This appears to be the maximum protection that can be achieved with nedocromil sodium and is similar to the protection obtained with 4 mg nedocromil administered by metered dose aerosol.
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