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Scheduled asthma management in general practice generally improve asthma control in those who attend.

Respir Med. 2012 Feb 18. Backer V, Bornemann M, Knudsen D, Ommen H. Dept of Respiratory Medicine L, Respiratory Research Unit, Bispebjerg Hospital, Bispebjerg Bakke 23, 2400 Copenhagen NV, Denmark.

BACKGROUND: Successful asthma management involves guideline-based treatment and regular follow-up. We aimed to study the level of disease control in asthmatic individuals managed by their GP and a dedicated nurse when using a systematic asthma consultation guide based on Global Initiative of Asthma guidelines (GINA guidelines).

METHODS: Patients aged 18-79 years with doctor-diagnosed asthma were included. When managing the patients, the clinics were instructed to follow a consultation guide based on the principles of the GINA guidelines. This included evaluation of symptoms, treatment, compliance, lung function, and a scheduled follow-up appointment based on the level of asthma control:

RESULTS: At the initial visit (baseline), 684 patients (36.8%) were classified as well-controlled, 740 (39.8%) as partly controlled and 434 (23.4%) as uncontrolled. 1784 patients had been offered a follow-up visit and 623 (35%) had attended. A response analysis was performed, and those participating were older (46 versus 45 years, p < 0.01), whereas other variables were similar. A higher level of asthma control was found at the follow-up visit compared to the baseline visit (uncontrolled asthma 29.7% and 16.5%, respectively, p < 0.001). At the time of the follow-up visit, changes in treatment strategies were found (p < 0.01), and furthermore, level of lung function improved at the follow-up visit.

CONCLUSION: Although most asthmatic individuals received asthma treatment, a substantial number still were partly or poorly controlled. The overall asthma control improved significantly when a systematic asthma management approach was introduced and applied by dedicated health care staff.

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