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Lung India. 2019 Nov-Dec;36(6):512-518. doi: 10.4103/lungindia.lungindia_343_18.

Suboptimal compliance to aerosol therapy in pediatric asthma: A prospective cohort study from Eastern India.

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Department of Pediatrics, Medical College and Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India.
Department of Pharmacology, IPGMER, Kolkata, West Bengal, India.



Suboptimal compliance to aerosol medication is common in pediatric asthma. Accordingly, the objective of this study is to assess noncompliance to aerosol therapy in childhood asthma and determine contributory factors.

Materials and Methods:

A prospective cohort study was conducted among pediatric patients attending asthma clinic. Patients (n = 215) having "mild" and "moderate" asthma severity rating were included. The total study duration was 12 months (June 2016-June 2017), with an active recruitment phase of 6 months. The minimum period for follow-up was 90 days. Caregivers were instructed to maintain an "asthma diary" for daily dosages of inhalers. At follow-up, the diary entries were corroborated with the amount of inhaler medication unused. Subsequently, medication compliance ratio (CR) was calculated according to the following formula: CR = number of medication doses taken/number of medication doses prescribed. CR% >80 was considered as "good compliance".


A total of 169 patients (78.6%) returned for follow-up. The mean compliance to asthma medication was suboptimal (75.3%). The children were primarily prescribed inhaled corticosteroids and short-acting beta-agonist (SABA)-based regimens on index visit. Leukotriene receptor antagonist was added in select cases (67.9%). Nearly 45.6% of the patients had "good compliance." CR correlated with the sociodemographic profile and disease severity. Higher socioeconomic status and proper inhaler technique reflected better symptom control. Fear of side effects, behavioral difficulties, and economic restrictions were the identified causes of medication default.


In the Eastern part of India, compliance to aerosol therapy in pediatric asthma is suboptimal. Sociodemographics, disease severity, and inhaler technique are important determinants.


Asthma; education; patient compliance; predictors; treatment

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