Journal Article Problems of elderly patients on inhalation therapy: Difference in problem recognition between patients and medical professionals

Hira, Daiki  ,  Komase, Yuko  ,  Koshiyama, Setsuko  ,  Oguma, Tetsuya  ,  Hiramatsu, Tetsuo  ,  Shiraki, Akira  ,  Nishikawa, Masanori  ,  Nakanishi, Masanori  ,  Tsuji, Takao  ,  Matsumoto, Hisako  ,  Ichimura, Koichi  ,  Iwanaga, Takashi  ,  Morikawa, Miwa  ,  Yasuba, Hirotaka  ,  Sugaya, Fumiko  ,  Arakawa, Yukako  ,  Kobayashi, Yoshiki  ,  Kato, Toshiyuki  ,  Futamura, Yutaka  ,  Tsuji, Fumio  ,  Terada, Tomohiro

65 ( 4 )  , pp.444 - 449 , 2016-10 , Japanese Society of Allergology
Background: There is no systematic analysis to identify problems involved with instruction on inhalation therapy for elderly patients. We conducted a nationwide questionnaire survey for patients and medical professionals. Methods: A questionnaire survey was conducted of adult patients on inhaled drugs (ages 18-92 years, 820 individuals) and medical professionals (pharmacists or nurses) who provided instruction on inhalation therapy to these patients in 23 institutions in Japan to investigate the technique and the level of understanding (knowledge) of the inhalation therapy. Changes in the recognition of performance of inhalation technique and inhalation knowledge with increasing age were analyzed. Results: According to patients' subjective assessment, there was no deterioration in the performance of the inhalation technique or loss of the knowledge with increasing age. On the other hand, medical professionals' objective assessment revealed a significant loss of both inhalation technique and knowledge with increasing age. Not many elderly patients noticed their own problems themselves, revealing a great perception gap between elderly patients and medical professionals. Thus, there was concern that patients would unconsciously practice the inhalation procedure improperly. On the other hand, in comparison with non-elderly patients, elderly patients were less resistant to continuation of therapy, suggesting that they would be more likely to accept instruction on inhalation therapy. Conclusions: Elderly patients are apt to assume that they "understand well", therefore, in order to recognize and close the perception gap between elderly patients and medical professionals, it is necessary to provide them with more aggressive (frequent) instructions on inhalation therapy.

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