Describe the mechanisms of action of drug groups commonly used to treat acute severe asthma.

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College Answer

Common drugs listed were
• Beta 2 agonists salbutamol and adrenaline
• Steroids
• Magnesium
• Phosphodiesterase inhibitors
In order to obtain marks for that class of drug the mechanism of action had to be described
e.g. for theophylline; acts as a bronchodilator by inhibiting the breakdown of cyclic AMP and
cyclic GMP.
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