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Severe Asthma Research at the NHLBI, NIH Bethesda Campus

Patient Information

The researchers and staff of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the Clinical Center welcome you.

Can patients with severe, as well as milder forms of asthma participate in research studies at the NHLBI, NIH Campus in Bethesda, Maryland?

Yes.

Click on this link for a video that discusses research aimed at developing new treatments for patients with severe asthma being conducted at the Bethesda, Maryland campus of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at the National Institutes of Health.

What is severe asthma?

Approximately 5 to 10% of asthma patients have severe asthma that is not well controlled by long-term controller medications, such as high-dose inhaled corticosteroids, or oral prednisone. These patients may also be classified as having refractory or steroid-resistant asthma.

Patients with persistent severe chronic asthma may require treatment with oral prednisone for extended periods of time, which can be associated with serious side-effects, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, bone loss, and infections.


Are there alternative treatments for severe uncontrolled asthma besides corticosteroids (prednisone)?

An alternative asthma treatment for severe, uncontrolled asthma is an antibody that blocks IgE, a key compound involved in allergy.

New asthma therapies are desperately needed for severe asthmatics who are poorly controlled despite these standard medications.


Does the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) conduct research studies for severe asthmatics at the NIH Clinical Research Center in Bethesda, Maryland?

Yes. Research studies of new asthma medications are being conducted by the NHLBI Intramural Asthma Clinical Trials Program at the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland.

The goal of these clinical trials is to test whether new asthma medications are effective for patients with severe asthma.

Click here to see a listing of current asthma studies being performed at the NHLBI, NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland: http://patientrecruitment.nhlbi.nih.gov/Asthma.aspx

Click here to learn more about participating at a study at the NIH Clinical Research Center: http://www.cc.nih.gov/participate.shtml


Can patients with asthma be evaluated at the NHLBI, NIH Campus in Bethesda, Maryland?

Yes. If you have asthma, you may contact a research coordinator to discuss if you qualify for a research study at the NIH Clinical Research Center in Bethesda, Maryland. Eligible patients will receive a comprehensive evaluation by an asthma specialist at not cost to you. The results of this evaluation will be made available to you and your physician.


How much will it cost to participate in a study at the NHLBI, NIH Campus in Bethesda, Maryland?

There is no cost for participating in a study or having a comprehensive evaluation by an asthma specialist at the NHLBI, NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland. Travel expenses will be provided consistent with NIH guidelines.


What tests will be performed during my evaluation?

You will receive a thorough history and physical examination by an asthma specialist. You may also undergo blood and breathing tests, allergy skin testing, and imaging studies of your lungs. More in-depth testing will be obtained as indicated. There is no cost to you for this evaluation.


Who are the asthma specialists at NIH?

The NIH asthma team is comprised of pulmonologists, nurse practitioners, and respiratory therapists.

Pulmonologists from NHLBI include Drs. Stewart Levine and Amisha Barochia. Dr. Nargues Weir, a pulmonary specialist from the INOVA Fairfax Advanced Lung Disease Program, is also a member of the severe asthma research team at NHLBI. Maryann Kaler, CRNP, and Rosemarie Cuento, CRNP, are the asthma nurse practitioners for NHLBI.


Who do I contact to find out more about participating in a severe asthma research study at
the NHLBI, NIH Campus in Bethesda, Maryland?

There are several ways you can contact us to learn more about participating in asthma research studies at the NHLBI, NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland:

  1. You may email the asthma nurse practitioner, Maryann Kaler, at kalerm@mail.nih.gov, or Rosemarie Cuento, at rosemarie.cuento@nih.gov.
  2. You may leave a voice message toll-free, at 1-877-NIH-LUNG (1-877-644-5864), extension 2, or at
    301-402-1553.
  3. You may email us at nhlbi_lungstudy@nhlbi.nih.gov.
  4. You may contact the NIH Patient Recruitment and Public Liaison Office at 1-800-411-1222 or via TTY
    1-866-411-1010.



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