People with asthma suffering ‘because doctors can’t understand inhalers’

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People with asthma are struggling to use the inhalers correctly, according to a new report.

Writing in the Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin, a British Medical Journal publication, a panel of doctors note that the reason for the misuse could be because doctors don’t understand the devices themselves.

They say asthma sufferers including children are ending up in Accident and Emergency services with serious breathing difficulties because they have not been given clear and accurate advice on how to use inhalers.

The authors warn: “Of perhaps more concern is the fact that many health professionals also do not know how to use inhalers correctly and are therefore not in a position to coach patients effectively.”

One study showed 91 per cent of healthcare professionals who teach patients inhaler use, “could not demonstrate all the recognised steps” in taking inhaled medication.

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