During recent years, extra-fine particle inhaled corticosteroids with a median aerodynamic diameter ≤2 μm have been introduced in the treatment of asthma. The aim of this paper was to review pharmacokinetics and systemic activity of extra-fine particle hydroalkane pressurized metered dose inhaled (pMDI) ciclesonide and beclomethasone dipropionate in children. A literature review was performed. Systemic bioavailability of oral and pulmonary deposition of extra-fine ciclesonide and beclomethasone dipropionate was 52% and 82%, the half-life in serum 3.2 and 1.5 h and first-pass hepatic metabolism >99% and 60%, respectively. Secondary analyses of urine cortisol/creatinine excretion found no effects of ciclesonide pMDI between 40 and 320 μg/day or of beclomethasone dipropionate pMDI between 80 and 400 μg/day. Ciclesonide pMDI 40, 80 and 160 μg/day caused no effects on short-term lower leg growth rate as assessed by knemometry. Ciclesonide 320 μg/day was associated with a numerically short-term growth suppression equivalent to 30% which was similar to 25% and 36% suppression caused by beclomethasone dipropionate HFA and CFC 200 μg/day, respectively. Consistent with the differences in key pharmacokinetic features, beclomethasone dipropionate is associated with a systemic activity detected by knemometry at a lower dose than ciclesonide. Whether that correlates with a clinically important difference remains to be explored. Assessments of systemic activity of beclomethasone dipropionate <200 μg/day and of ciclesonide >180 μg/day as well as head-to-head comparisons are warranted. Preferably, such studies should apply the sensitive method of knemometry.