Behavioral issues in asthma management

R Brown
Allergy and Asthma Proceedings: 2001, 22 (2): 67-9
Despite advances in drug treatment, outcomes in asthma remain unsatisfactory. Often overlooked in developing treatment strategies are important factors that affect outcomes in asthma: behavioral issues such as the low rate of patient adherence to the prescribed treatment regimen, inadequate physician-patient communication, and inconsistent implementation of evidence-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, resulting in meaningful decreases in asthma-related morbidity and mortality.


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