Children With Asthma

In the first study to evaluate inhaler technique in children hospitalized for asthma—the group at highest risk for complications and death from asthma—researchers found that nearly half of participants demonstrate improper inhaler use, which means they routinely were not taking in the full dose of medication.

Critical errors in inhaler technique

Adolescents most commonly display critical errors in inhaler technique. They also often skip using a spacer; which is a device that is recommend for use with an inhaler to help the right amount of asthma medication reach the lungs. Findings were publish in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

Out of 113 study participants, 2-16 years of age, 42% miss at least one critical step in their inhaler technique. Researchers found that 18% did not use a spacer device with their inhaler; so that these patients were mostly older. They see that our adolescent patients; hence who are transitioning to independent medication management; so still need close monitoring to make sure they use their inhaler and spacer appropriately to achieve optimal asthma control,” says Dr. Samady.
Teens may feel that using a spacer is only for younger children; but using a spacer is recommend for adults as well. Previous studies have shown that adding a spacer device to an inhaler increases the amount of asthma medication a person takes in from 34% to 83%. Children with asthma can lead full lives if they receive the right medication at the appropriate dose; which is why correct inhaler technique is so crucial,” says Dr. Samady.
This update was fund by a grant from Teva Pharma Australia. Apart from providing a financial grant, Teva has not been involve in the development, recommendation, review or editing of this publication. The original version was develop with support from the Australian Government Department of Health.