Harari M, Barzillai R, Shani J.
The recognition of asthma as an inflammatory disease has led over the past 20 years to a major shift in its pharmacotherapy. The previous emphasis on using relatively short-acting agents for relieving bronchospasms and for removing bronchial mucus has shifted toward long-term strategies with the use of inhaled corticosteroids, which successfully prevent and abolish airway inflammation. Because some of the biological, chemical, and immunological processes that characterize asthma also underlie arthritis and other inflammatory diseases, and because many of these conditions have been successfully treated for the past 40 years at the Dead Sea, we were not surprised to realize and record the significant improvement of asthmatic condition after a 4-week stay at the Dead Sea: lung function was improved, the number and severity of attacks was reduced, and the efficacy of beta2-agonist treatments was improved. After reviewing the acute and chronic treatments of asthma in the clinic (including emergency rooms) with magnesium compounds, and the use of such salts as supplementary agents in respiratory diseases, we suggest that the improvement in the asthmatic condition at the Dead Sea may be due to absorption of this element through the skin and via the lungs, and due to its involvement in anti-inflammatory and vasodilatatory processes”.
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