Sleep and Breathing

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 1229–1235 | Cite as

Cromoglycate, reproterol, or both—what’s best for exercise-induced asthma?

  • T. Küpper
  • K. Goebbels
  • L. N. Kennes
  • N. C. Netzer
Original Article



International guidelines recommend short- (SABA) or long-acting b-agonists for the prevention of bronchoconstriction after exercise (EIB) in patients with exercise-induced asthma (EIA). However, other drugs are still in discussion for the prevention of EIB. We investigated the efficacy of a combination of inhaled sodium cromoglycate and the β-mimetic drug reproterol versus inhaled reproterol alone and both versus inhaled placebo in subjects with exercise-induced asthma (EIA).


The study aimed to prove the preventive effect of a combination of 1-mg reproterol and 2-mg disodium cromoglycate (DSCG) and its single components vs. placebo, measuring the decrease of FEV1 after a standardized treadmill test in 11 patients with recorded EIA. The study medication was twice as high as those of drugs which are commercially available (e.g., Allergospasmin®, Aarane®).


The results revealed that the combination of reproterol and DSCG was significantly effective against a decrease of FEV1 after a standardized exercise challenge test (ECT) compared to placebo. The short-acting b-agonist reproterol alone had almost the same effectiveness as the combination of reproterol and DNCG. The difference between the combination with DNCG and reproterol alone was less than 10% and insignificant (p 0.48). DNCG alone did not show a difference in the effectiveness compared to placebo.


Prevention of EIA with the combination of reproterol and DSCG or with reproterol only is effective. An exclusive recommendation in favor of the combination cannot be given due to the low difference in the effectiveness versus reproterol alone. Due to the limited number of subjects and some probands showing protection under DSCG, it cannot be completely excluded that there is some preventive power of DSCG in individual cases.


Exercise-induced asthma Cromoglycate Reproterol Sport Workload 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. Küpper
    • 1
    • 2
  • K. Goebbels
    • 1
    • 5
  • L. N. Kennes
    • 3
  • N. C. Netzer
    • 4
  1. 1.Institute of Occupational and Social MedicineRWTH Aachen UniversityAachenGermany
  2. 2.Medical Commission of the Union Internationale des Associations d’Alpinisme (UIAA MedCom)BernSwitzerland
  3. 3.Institute of Medical StatisticsRWTH Aachen UniversityAachenGermany
  4. 4.Hermann Buhl Institute for Hypoxia and Sleep Medicine ResearchScience Program of the Paracelsus Medical University SalzburgBad AiblingGermany
  5. 5.Department of Internal MedicineKrankenhaus WalenstadtWalenstadtSwitzerland

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