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The common report of parents of asthmatic children that inhaled/nebulised salbutamol causes overactive behaviour was investigated. Nineteen children were assessed in a standardised setting before and after the administration of nebulised salbutamol and placebo. Neither parental report nor observer ratings suggested any significant increase in the child's level of activity.
It is commonly reported by parents of asthmatic children that treatment with nebulised salbutamol leads to restlessness and overactive behaviour. To our knowledge there has been no published study investigating this issue, although some 20% of young children (aged 2-6 years) who receive salbutamol syrup have been reported as experiencing excitement. (1)
The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of nebulised salbutamol on the activity and attention level of preschool children.
Asthmatic children aged 2-6 years were recruited from the paediatric respiratory clinic at Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital. The exclusion criteria included: global learning difficulties, history of being ventilated in the neonatal period, history of epilepsy and taking anticonvulsants, use of psychotropic medication, use of inhaled salbutamol within four hours …