Background: Asthma represents a worldwide health problem with a strong morbidity
and a major impact on the health care system. Multiple efforts have been made towards
the development of new strategies for the prevention and treatment of this disorder. In the
light of this the present review of the literature aimed at summarizing the latest advances in
prevention and treatment of pediatric asthma with a focus on the most effective options of interventions
during the first stages of life.
Methods: References were identified by searches of PubMed. Search terms used in the search
were “pediatric asthma”, “treatment” and “prevention”. We included only meta-analysis, randomized
controlled trials, reviews and systematic review articles pertaining to humans and
subjects aged 0-18 years. All the interventions have been classified as “non-pharmacological”
Results: Non-pharmacological interventions have been focused in identifying the genetic and
environmental factors underlying the pathogenesis of this disease, including the individual
genetic susceptibility, the early allergic sensitization, the role of the environmental microbiome
and the exposure to infections and to pollutants. Moreover, the optimization of the existing
pharmacological strategies and the development of new treatment options have improved
markedly the management of this disease, thereby reducing the health care costs and
ameliorating the quality of life of patients.
Conclusion: Childhood asthma prevention and treatment still represents a worldwide challenge.
Future efforts should be aimed at identifying high risk target populations, minimizing
the costs of each policy of intervention and increasing adherence to treatment strategies.