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Allergy Asthma Proc. 2000 May-Jun;21(3):151-8.

Impact of changes in asthma severity on health-related quality of life in pediatric and adult asthma patients: results from the asthma outcomes monitoring system.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics and Medicine, University of Tennessee, Memphis, USA.


The goals of asthma treatment have broadened beyond managing traditional clinical markers of disease severity, and now include a focus on benefits of treatment in terms that are most meaningful to patients. Measurement of both generic and disease-specific health-related quality of life (HQL) is advocated because each provides complementary information about how the condition affects everyday functioning and well-being and whether treatments have their intended effects. The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of changes in asthma severity (defined using NHLBI/NAEPP severity staging) on patient-assessed HQL. Two hundred and thirty-three pediatric asthma patients and 269 adult asthma patients were evaluated in a one-year observational study. Analyses were performed to compare the generic and asthma-specific scores for patients whose asthma severity improved, stayed the same, or worsened over one year. The asthma-specific scales are sensitive to changes in disease severity. Of the generic scales, those tapping areas of physical health are more affected than the mental/emotional scales. This confirms that HQL measures are responsive to changes in asthma severity. They complement traditional clinical markers used to evaluate changes in a patient's disease state and thus give the physician another useful tool in following the clinical progress of the child with asthma.

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