The relationship of rhinovirus-associated asthma hospitalizations with inhaled corticosteroids and smoking

Daniel L. Venarske, William W. Busse, Marie R. Griffin, Tebeb Gebretsadik, Ayumi K. Shintani, Patricia A. Minton, R. Stokes Peebles, Robert Hamilton, Elizabeth Weisshaar, Rose Vrtis, Stanley B. Higgins, Tina V. Hartert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Background. Although rhinovirus (RV) respiratory infections trigger asthma exacerbations, the etiologic association between this virus and severe exacerbations, as well as the clinical characteristics of adults at risk for RV-associated asthma that necessitates hospitalization, have not been established. Methods. During 1999-2003, we conducted a cohort study of 101 adults prospectively enrolled at hospital admission for an asthma exacerbation. Patient characteristics and frequencies of RV in nasal specimens were analyzed, by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), at asthma-related hospital admission and at a 3-month convalescent follow-up visit. Results. RV was detected by RT-PCR in 21% of hospitalized patients over a 4-year period and in 1.3% of patients who returned for a 3-month follow-up visit. RV detection was strongly associated with hospitalization for asthma (adjusted odds ratio [OR], 15.1 [95% confidence interval {CI}, 1.88-121.4]). After adjustment for baseline asthma severity, RV-positive patients were more likely than RV-negative patients to be current smokers and nonusers of inhaled corticosteroids (ICSs) (adjusted OR, 11.18 [95% CI, 2.37-52.81]; P = .002). Conclusions. RV respiratory infection is an etiologic agent in severe asthma exacerbations necessitating hospitalization in adults. Compared with hospitalized patients with asthma who were RV negative, RV-positive patients were significantly more likely to be smokers and nonusers of ICSs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1536-1543
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Infectious Diseases


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