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Confidence in correct inhaler technique and its association with treatment adherence and health status among US patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Authors Amin AN, Ganapathy V, Roughley A, Small M

Received 21 April 2017

Accepted for publication 9 June 2017

Published 12 July 2017 Volume 2017:11 Pages 1205—1212


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Alpesh N Amin,1 Vaidyanathan Ganapathy,2 Adam Roughley,3 Mark Small3

1Department of Medicine, University of California, Irvine, USA; 2Global Health Economics & Outcomes Research, Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc, Marlborough, USA; 3Respiratory Research, Adelphi Real World, Bollington, UK

Background: Improper use of bronchodilators is associated with poor disease control, nonadherence to long-term therapy, and poor clinical outcomes. Our current understanding of factors associated with correct inhaler use and adherence is limited. We measured physician- and patient-reported confidence in device usage and associations with treatment adherence and COPD-related health status.
Methods: This was an analysis of a US observational, point-in-time survey of physicians and patients. Physicians who met study eligibility criteria completed surveys for 5 consecutive, eligible patients who were then invited to respond to questionnaires. We assessed patient demographics, type of prescribed inhaler device(s), device training, COPD severity, comorbidities, physician- and patient self-reported confidence in device usage, treatment adherence, and health status.
Results: Completed questionnaires for 373 patients were provided by 134 physicians. Complete confidence in device usage was observed for 22% and 17% of patients as reported by patients and physicians, respectively. Greater confidence was associated with higher self-reported adherence to inhaler usage. Physicians were more likely than patients to report lower levels of patient confidence in device usage. High physician- and patient-reported confidence were associated with more favorable health status. Predictors of confidence in device usage included fewer comorbidities, no depression, and higher education levels.
Conclusion: Low confidence in inhaler usage was associated with lower adherence and poor COPD-related health status. Choice of inhaler device tailored to patients’ ability to use specific devices and ongoing education to support optimal inhaler usage may improve patient confidence and enhance both adherence and health status.

Keywords: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, inhaler technique, adherence, health status, patient satisfaction

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