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Original research
Questionnaire about the risk of growth suppression of inhaled corticosteroids
  1. Ole D Wolthers
  1. Asthma and Allergy Clinic, Children’s Clinic Randers, Randers, Denmark
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ole D Wolthers; akk.odws{at}


Background Inhaled corticosteroids are associated with a risk of growth suppression in children. The aim of the present study was to assess what children with asthma, lay people and paediatricians feel about the risk of growth suppression by inhaled corticosteroids.

Methods A questionnaire was completed by seven populations consisting of 9–19 years old children and adolescents with asthma; 9–19 year olds with another chronic illness; healthy 9–19 year olds; parents to children with chronic conditions; parents to healthy schoolchildren; young adults; and paediatricians.

Results A total of 1216 individuals completed the questionnaire. A total of 867 individuals (74.6%) would not worry about a risk of 1-year growth suppression in the range of 0.5–2 cm (range: 233 (63.3%) in parents to patients in a secondary referral centre to 59 (86.8%) in the group of paediatricians (χ 2 53.3, df 12, p<0.001; γ −223, error 0.042, p<0.001). A total of 745 individuals (64.3%) said that a loss in final height of 0.5–2 cm would not worry them (range: 34 (54.0%) in paediatricians to 119 (76.3%) in parents to healthy children (χ 2 49.5, df 12, p<0.001; γ −0.073, error 0.039, p=0.06).

Conclusions Most children with asthma, lay people and paediatricians do not worry about the risk of growth suppression of inhaled corticosteroids in the range up to 2 cm. Paediatricians worry less about the risk of 1-year growth suppression but more about final height suppression than children with asthma and other groups of children and adults. Paediatricians need to address the different concerns of some of their patients on this issue.

  • Questionnaire
  • growth
  • short term growth
  • asthma
  • inhaled corticosteroids, paediatricians, lay people

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  • Contributors The protocol was written by ODW, who also informed all participants, collected, processed and interpreted the data and wrote the paper.

  • Funding The study was supported by a grant from ‘The Foundation for Research and Development in Secondary Referral Centres’.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval Ethics Committee Region Midtjylland, Denmark, and the Data Protection Agency, Denmark, decided that the questionnaire did not require authorisation.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement Data are available on reasonable request. All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information.