Background: The use of low-dose inhaled corticosteroid-formoterol as reliever monotherapy has recently been recommended in the asthma treatment guidelines. However, the efficacy of this treatment strategy has not yet been determined during the stepping-down period in moderate asthma. This study aimed to evaluate the feasibility of reducing treatment to as-needed budesonide-formoterol (BFM) in moderate asthma with complete remission.Methods: We randomly assigned 31 patients (8 males and 23 females with a mean age of 57.2 years) with complete remission of asthma by inhaled BFM (160/4.5 μg) twice daily to receive BFM (160/4.5 μg) as needed (16 patients), or budesonide (BUD) (200 μg) twice daily (15 patients). The study was an open-label study done for 48 weeks, with the primary outcome as the cumulative percentages of patients with treatment failure (asthma exacerbation or loss of asthma control or lack of satisfaction after using medications) in the two groups.Results: Six patients (42%) using as-needed BFM had treatment failure, as compared with three patients (21.4%) using BUD maintenance (hazards ratio for as-needed BFM, 1.77; 95% confidential interval, 0.44–7.12; p=0.41). The changes in forced expiratory volume in 1 second were −211.3 mL with as-needed BFM versus −97.8 mL with BUD maintenance (difference, 113.5 mL; p=0.75) and the change in fractional exhaled nitric oxide was significantly higher in both groups, at 8.68 parts per billion (ppb) in the as-needed BFM group and 2.5 ppb. in the BUD maintenance group (difference, 6.18 ppb; p=0.049).Conclusion: Compared with BUD maintenance, there were no significant differences in treatment failure rate in patients who received as-needed BFM during the stepping down period in moderate asthma. However, they showed reduced lung function and relapsed airway inflammation. The results are limited by imprecision, and further large RCTs are needed.