Results of a recent study determined that a significant problem among both youth asthmatic patients as well as their caregivers is the difficulty of remembering to take an asthma medication.
The study aimed to analyze issues surrounding medication use as well as to determine the relationship between socio-demographic characteristics and reporting of medication problems/concerns. The study included 359 English- and Spanish-speaking patients aged 11- to 17-years-old with persistent asthma from 4 different pediatric clinics. Data collection included interviews of the youth patients as well as questionnaires completed by caregivers.
Results of the study found that 80% of patients and 70% of caregivers reported having at least one issue using asthma medications. The study authors reported, “The most commonly reported problems by youth were: (a) hard to remember when to take the asthma medication (54%) and (b) hard to use asthma medication at school (34%).” They added, “Younger children were significantly more likely to report difficulty in understanding their asthma medication’s directions and difficulty reading the print on the medication’s package.”
Analysis of the completed questionnaires determined that caregivers believed the most common problem for their children was the difficulty in remembering to take their medication (49%). Additionally, it was found that paying for a child’s asthma medication was significantly more difficult for caregivers without Medicaid.
“Difficulty remembering to take asthma medication was a significant problem for youth and their caregivers,” the study authors concluded. They recommend that providers not only identify issues surrounding asthma medication use but also determine appropriate strategies to address any concerns.
Sleath B et al. Factors associated with adolescent and caregiver reported problems in using asthma medications. Journal of Asthma. DOI: 10.1080/02770903.2018.1466312.