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Asthma Health Outcomes Project

Overviews of Surveyed Asthma ProgramsSeptember 2005

International Programs: The Netherlands (cont’d)Back to Index

Self-management of asthma in general practice, asthma control and quality of life: A randomised controlled trial

University of Nijmegen

6500 HB Nijmegen The Netherlands

Bart P.A. Thoonen, MD, PhD

b.thoonen@hag.umcn.nl

www.astmafonds.nl

This randomized controlled trial was conducted in Nijmegaen and Eindhoven, The Netherlands to determine the effectiveness of asthma self-management with tailored asthma education in general practice.

Nineteen general practices were randomly allocated to "usual care" or "self-management". Two-hundred and fourteen asthma patients age 16-60 years were included and followed for two years.

Patients in the self-management group received four individually tailored asthma education sessions over three months delivered by their general practitioner. The sessions were conducted according to a written protocol and incorporated patients' self-reported needs using a feedback form. Patients kept asthma diaries and visited a lung function laboratory every six months.

Participation in the trial resulted in improvement of quality of life for adult patients, symptoms, medication use, and functional status (lost activity days).

The study concluded that self-management lowers the burden of illness as perceived by patients with asthma and is at least as effective as treatment usually provided in Dutch primary care.

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