Selection needed for cough therapy

US researchers analysed nine small randomised controlled trials, including eight examining proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) and one involving ranitidine.

Only two trials reported a statistically significant reduction in cough frequency or severity after acid suppressive therapy, however there was a trend to efficacy in another six trials.

In most of the trials the therapeutic gain from pharmacological intervention was 12.5–35.8% greater in patients with pathological oesophageal acid exposure, than in those without, among whom up to 8.6%