Behavioral issues in asthma management


  • Randall Brown MD, MPH

    Corresponding author
    1. Division of Pediatric Pulmonary Medicine, University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor, Michigan
    • Division of Pediatric Pulmonary Medicine, University of Michigan, 606 Brooks St., Ann Arbor, MI 48103.
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Despite advances in drug treatment, outcomes in asthma remain unsatisfactory. Often overlooked in developing treatment strategies are important factors that affect outcomes in asthma, namely behavioral issues such as the low rate of patient adherence to the prescribed treatment regimen, inadequate physician-patient communication, and inconsistent implementation of evidenc-based treatment guidelines. The low adherence rates among asthma patients may be improved by education programs that emphasize both the potentially serious risks of this disease and a team approach to treatment that includes patients and their families in developing a treatment plan. Interactive physician education programs have been shown to improve guideline implementation and physician communication skills. Indeed, effective physician-patient communication may be the key to improving guideline implementation and patient adherence to treatment, resulting in meaningful decreases in asthma-related morbidity and mortality. Pediatr Pulmonol. 2001; Supplement 21:26–30. © 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.