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March/April 2011 Annals of Family Medicine tip sheet
Date:3/14/2011

br>University of California, San Francisco


Oral Prednisolone Test Not Useful for Diagnosing Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

Sometimes doctors use the patient's response to a short course of oral prednisolone test to diagnose chronic obstructive pulmonary disorders. These researchers found that while a response to oral prednisolone was suggestive of COPD, it added no diagnostic value to more easily obtainable information. Of 233 patients complaining of cough who were given a 14-day test treatment with oral prednisolone, researchers found those who responded to the treatment were more likely to have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (23 percent) than asthma (4 percent). After adjusting for age, sex and smoking status, however, the association between prednisolone and COPD was no longer statistically significant; hence, the researchers conclude the oral prednisolone test had no relevant value for diagnosing or excluding COPD in addition to more easily obtainable diagnostic information. In light of the unwillingness of many patients to undergo the prednisolone test, the authors recommend against using this test in the diagnostic workup when COPD is suspected.

Diagnostic Value of Oral Prednisolone Test for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorders
By Berna D. L. Broekhuizen, M.D., et al
University Medical Center Utrecht, The Netherlands

Literature Review Identifies Instruments for Measuring Patient-Centered Care

A systematic literature review finds 13 instruments for measuring patients' perceptions of patient-centered care, a central value in modern medicine. Two of the 13 instruments identified by the researchers are dedicated to patient-centered care, but the authors point out they are visit-based, limiting their applicability for the study of care processes over time, such as chronic illness management. The eleven remaining instruments provide only partial coverage of the concept.

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Contact: Angela Sharma
asharma@aafp.org
913-269-2269
American Academy of Family Physicians
Source:Eurekalert

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