JOURNAL ARTICLE
REVIEW

Pharmacologic agents for mucus clearance in bronchiectasis

Girish B Nair, Jonathan S Ilowite
Clinics in Chest Medicine 2012, 33 (2): 363-70
22640851
There are no approved pharmacologic agents to enhance mucus clearance in non-cystic fibrosis (CF) bronchiectasis. Evidence supports the use of hyperosmolar agents in CF, and studies with inhaled mannitol and hypertonic saline are ongoing in bronchiectasis. N-acetylcysteine may act more as an antioxidant than a mucolytic in other lung diseases. Dornase α is beneficial to patients with CF, but is not useful in patients with non-CF bronchiectasis. Mucokinetic agents such as β-agonists have the potential to improve mucociliary clearance in normals and many disease states, but have not been adequately studied in patients with bronchiectasis.

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