A new study, 'Management of childhood asthma in Western Australia,' is now available. According to recent research from Perth, Australia, 'The study aimed to determine how childhood asthma is managed in Western Australia by general practitioners (GPs) and specialist paediatricians. A questionnaire survey was sent to 992 GPs and specialist paediatricians, asking about practice and preferences regarding maintenance management of childhood asthma and treatment of acute asthma.'
'Questions about asthma in infants, pre-school and school-aged children were asked separately. The overall response rate was 24.7%, with 188/878 (21.4%) of GPs and 44/62 (71.0%) of paediatricians returning the questionnaire. The decision to start maintenance therapy was generally based on symptom frequency and severity. The first choice for maintenance treatment in all age groups was inhaled corticosteroids (ICS). The second most common treatment varied according to age group, with short-acting beta(2)-agonist (SBA) preferred for infants, montelukast or short-acting beta(2)-agonist for pre-schoolers and combination therapy (ICS + long action beta(2)-agonist) for school-aged children. Objective monitoring of lung function with peak flow or spirometry, was used by 40% of GPs and 59% of paediatricians. Acute asthma was primarily managed with inhaled salbutamol and oral corticosteroids. There were few differences in treatment choice between GPs and paediatricians. Many GPs indicated that they did not treat asthma in infants without specialist consultation. These data show good compliance by the minority of GPs responding to the survey and by paediatricians practising in Western Australia with current Australian asthma management guidelines,' wrote C. Calogero and colleagues, University of Western Australia, Center for Child Health Research (see also Life Sciences).
The researchers concluded: 'Major differences in treatment preferences between the groups were not detected.'
Calogero and colleagues published their study in the Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health (Management of childhood asthma in Western Australia. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health, 2009;45(3):139-48).
For additional information, contact C. Calogero, University of Western Australia, Telethon Institute for Child Research, Centre for Child Health Research, Perth, Western Australia, Australia.
Publisher contact information for the Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health is: Blackwell Publishing Inc., 350 Main St., Malden, MA 02148, USA.
Keywords: Australia, Perth, Life Sciences, Pediatrics, Allergy Medicine, Asthma, Allergies, Pulmonology, Congenital Lobar Emphysema, Corticosteroid, Treatment, Therapy, Child Health.
This article was prepared by Biotech Week editors from staff and other reports. Copyright 2009, Biotech Week via NewsRx.com.