Hospital-based Asthma Education: Group Participation


In another study conducted by Weiss at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, elementary school children (age 7 to 12 years) whose asthma had been disrupting their lives were targeted. The program kit, for which Weiss charged $7, consisted of a magazine for parents and a program for children to teach about asthma facts, internal and external asthma signals and triggers, relaxation techniques, the assuming of personal control, and decision making. The objective was to assess the improvement in management and the resulting behaviors in the group receiving the “Superstuff” program. Again the number of children enrolled was relatively small—20 in the experimental group and 23 in the control group. Assessments undertaken included evaluation of self-esteem, internal locus of control, ability to undertake asthma self-control, a parent questionnaire, and the physician’s assessment before and at 2, 6, and 12 months. This program improved selfmanagement skills (p<0.02), especially in the older children and in the male patients, but self-esteem and locus of control showed no significant difference. Both parents and physicians recorded decreased interruption of childrens’ lives due to asthma (p<0.05). Only 2 of 12 areas studied were considered improved by parents, namely less interruption and better communication with physicians. Canadian pharmacy levitra itat on There was a marginal impact on school absenteeism but most interesting was the fact that 50% of parents reported that half or fewer of the materials provided were used.
In another National Institutes of Health program from the National Asthma Center of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, Creer and associates studied a much larger group of children (n=147) that provided a control group by delaying participation for the first 3 months. The program consisted of 8 weeks during which there were three stages, namely training of the parents and children, group participation, and individual instruction. Parents and children were taught asthma pathophysiology, triggers, and treatment (self-management) skills, they monitored peak expired flow and symptoms using a diary card, and they learned how to process information, consider solutions, and select appropriate responses. There was a resulting significant increase in knowledge in the treated group (p<0.05), exacerbations decreased 80% per month, and 1 year later school absenteeism had decreased 2.5-fold.