Steroid Use for Asthma During COVID

Today’s pearl addresses the use of inhaled and systemic steroids in patients with COVID-19

Should they be held? Are they safe to continue?

Some common questions are being asked regarding treatment of asthma with steroids during COVID-19.

  1. Should asthma patients continue taking their steroid controller inhalers during COVID-19?
    • YES

Both the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology and the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology recommend continuing (AAAAI statement, ACAAI statement). It is important to avoid exacerbations and hospitalizations.

  1. Should acute asthma exacerbations be treated with oral steroids during COVID-19?
    • YES

While we are avoiding oral and IV steroids to treat COVID-19 directly, steroids may be indicated for other conditions, such as asthma exacerbations (CDC recommendations).




Author: Bryan D. Hayes, PharmD

Attending Pharmacist, Emergency Medicine and Toxicology, Massachusetts General Hospital; Assistant Professor of EM, Harvard Medical School

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