WASHINGTON - Children given steroids to treat asthma can have a life-long side effects, a new study finds.
The study found the steroids could stunt a child's growth by about a half inch.
The lead author of the study says "It's better to breath than to have the extra half inch."
"When you're talking about a young man who's six foot, you can't even notice it," says pediatrician Robert Strunk of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.
The study involved more than a thousand children being treated for mild to moderate asthma.
The growth slowdown detected in the study was observed during the first two years asthmatic children, ages 5 to 11 years old, took inhaled corticosteroids.
Followed into adulthood, 25-26 years old, the children never made up for that loss.
Strunk says there were no other side effects.