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Teens think they have asthma under control, but benefit from new approach to treatment
Date:5/6/2008

CINCINNATI Two studies that offer new insights to help adolescents and younger children improve their asthma control will be presented by researchers from Cincinnati Childrens Hospital Medical Center at this years annual meeting of the Pediatric Academic Society (PAS) in Honolulu, Hawaii.

One study, to be presented May 4, found that teens with asthma dramatically overestimate their ability to control the condition, according to Maria Britto, M.D., MPH, a physician in the Division of Adolescent Medicine at Cincinnati Childrens and study co-author.

Weve known that adolescent asthma patients tend to have poorer outcomes than younger children with the condition, and this study shows that teens tend to think theyre in control when they may be having difficulty, Dr. Britto said.

The researchers reported that 74 percent of adolescents dramatically overestimated their ability to control asthma, especially compared to the teens own reports of symptoms, use of rescue medications and limitations they placed on their activities. The study included 201 adolescents with an average age of 16.2 years who were observed during clinical visits. The findings suggest that adolescents perception of being in control may impact whether or not they follow treatment regimens and avoid situations that trigger their condition.

For those of us who treat teens with asthma, these findings will help us address with patients their perceived control versus what is actually going on, Dr. Britto said. As we have this dialogue with them, our hope is that it will improve their ability to manage their asthma and improve their health.

Improved care for asthma patients was also the subject of a second study at Cincinnati Childrens to be presented at PAS on May 6. This study found that a creative approach referred to as unplanned planned asthma visits resulted in young patients having fewer emergency room and hospital visits. The approach involves physic
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Contact: Nick Miller
nicholas.miller@cchmc.org
513-803-6035
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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