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Asthma Management Poor Among Youths and Adults

Better patient education can improve self-management of the disease

MONDAY, Sept. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Among youths and adults with asthma, self-management of the disease is sub-optimal due to inadequate asthma management education, according to a report published in the Sept. 7 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Researchers at the CDC's National Center for Environmental Health, Division of Environmental Hazards and Health Effects, in Atlanta, report on findings from the 2003 National Health Interview Survey.

Among survey respondents, there were 1,046 (8.5 percent) youths aged 17 years or younger with asthma, and the disease affected 2,048 (6.4 percent) adults. More young people than adults received self-management education -- only 12 percent of adults reported that they had taken an asthma management class, and 65 percent said they had been trained in how to deal with an asthma attack.

Forty percent of youths reported that they had been given an asthma management plan and 78 percent reported that they had received training in how to deal with an asthma attack.

"The findingsÂ…suggest that a substantial proportion of youths and adults with current asthma lack the education necessary for effective self-management and control of asthma symptoms," the authors write.

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