Methodology: 2.5/5
Usefulness: 2/5

Ramakrishnan S, et al. Lancet Respir Med. 2021 Apr 9:S2213-2600(21)00160-0.

Question and Methods: Is inhaled budesonide an effective treatment for patients with mild early symptoms of COVID-19? A randomized, open-label clinical trial of community patients with suspected COVID-19. 
Findings: Reduction in composite outcome of visits to urgent care, emergency department, or hospitalization in budesonide versus usual care (ARR 0.123; 95% CI 0.033-0.213, p=0.009). 
Limitations: Unequal outcomes in composite outcome, open label design, and small sample size due to early trial stoppage. 

Interpretation: Based on the limitations, this study – while showing a signal – does not provide enough evidence to warrant routine use of inhaled glucocorticoids for early COVID-19 disease.

By: Dr.  Hashim Kareemi

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  • Hans Rosenberg

    Dr. Rosenberg is an emergency physician at the Ottawa Hospital, assistant professor at the University of Ottawa, and Director of the Digital Scholarship and Knowledge Dissemination Program.