Faten Tinsa
Anis Ben Rhouma
Hadhami Ghaffari
Khadija Boussetta
Bechir Zouari
Ines Brini
Lotfi Karboul
Mahbouba Souid
Souad Bousnina


Background: Despite the common clinical practice, the available evidence on the efficacy of bronchodilators therapy for bronchiolitis is conflicting.
The aim of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of nebulized terbutaline in bronchiolitis as measured by improvement in clinical score, oxygen saturation or reduction in duration of hospitalization.
Methods: This prospective, double blind, placebo controlled, randomized clinical trial was performed at Children’s Hospital of Tunis from December 2004 to April 2006. A total of 35 patients less than 12 months of age with diagnosis of moderately severe bronchiolitis were enrolled and assigned to receive nebulized terbutaline or normal saline placebo at admission (T0), at 30 minutes after admission (T30) and every four hours during a study period. Outcome measurements included: Respiratory Distress Assessment Instrument (RDAI) score, respiratory rate, oxygen saturation, heart rate and the duration of hospitalization.
Results: There were no significant difference between terbutaline and placebo at baseline, T30 min, T60 min, and T120 min after start study in RDAI score, oxygen saturation in room air, rate respiratory and heart rate. There was no difference in duration of hospitalization.
Conclusion: Nebulized terbutaline therapy does not appear effective in treating moderately ill infants with the first acute bronchiolitis.


Bronchiolitis, bronchodilator agents, infant, terbutaline, wheezing, controlled trial, randomized



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