This study investigated factors associated with early self- administration of inhaled asthma medications by minority children. Specifically, the study evaluated: (1) the reasons parents allow early administration of inhaled medications, (2) childhood activities associated with early medication administration, (3) parent's perception of the child's ability to use a metered-dose inhaler (MDI), (4) the child's actual ability to use an MDI, and (5) concordance/discordance between physician-parent reports and parent-child reports of asthma medications. Study results indicated that 93% of the children were taking inhaled asthma medications without adult supervision. Early self-administration of asthma medications was related to the parent's employment status and the performance of other childhood behaviors such as completion of homework independently and crossing the street alone. Only 7% of the children had effective MDI skills, but 60% of the parents rated their child's MDI skills as excellent. Twenty percent, 67%, and 50%, respectively, of the parents' reports of beta-agonists, daily inhaled steroids, and cromolyn were discordant with the physician's actual prescriptions. Sixty-two percent, 57%, and 79%, respectively, of the children's reports for inhaled beta-agonists, daily inhaled steroids, and cromolyn were discordant with their parents' reports. Implications for anticipatory guidance, future educational strategies, and supervision of MDI technique are provided.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health