Sunday August 25, 2019

Shame and Sense of Guilt Using Inhalers at Work Prevents Asthma Sufferers from Working to Their Full Potential

On an average, three out of four workers could not work to their full potential, showed the survey of over 1,500 symptomatic asthma patients

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The study, published in the Journal of Asthma and Allergy, showed that asthma sufferers are missing nearly one-tenth of work hours due to their symptoms, which also results in a loss of productivity. Pixabay

It is not just respiratory symptoms or a feeling of tiredness that asthma sufferers have to face daily, many of them even have to deal with shame and a sense of guilt using inhalers at work, preventing them from working to their full potential, new research has found.

The World Health Organization estimates that 235 million people around the world suffer from asthma.

The study, published in the Journal of Asthma and Allergy, showed that asthma sufferers are missing nearly one-tenth of work hours due to their symptoms, which also results in a loss of productivity and affects their emotional well being.

On an average, three out of four workers could not work to their full potential, showed the survey of over 1,500 symptomatic asthma patients across six countries — Brazil, Canada, Germany, Japan, Spain and the UK.

Shame, Guilt, Asthma
It is not just respiratory symptoms or a feeling of tiredness that asthma sufferers have to face daily, many of them even have to deal with shame and a sense of guilt using inhalers at work. Pixabay

Overall, total work productivity dropped by one third (36 per cent) due to asthma.

“But, what struck us most was the emotional response to asthma in the workplace,” said Kevin Gruffydd-Jones from Box Surgery in Britain.

The study results found that on an average, up to one-tenth (9.3 per cent) of work hours were missed in a single week because of workers’ asthma symptoms.

Asthma sufferers in India too face similar challenges, according to doctors.

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“One cannot ignore the environment and other related conditions which in any case can go against the patient; she/he has to be prepared all the time with medications, inhalers and other prescriptions,” said Navneet Sood, Senior Consultant, Pulmonology, Dharmshila Narayana Superspeciality Hospital in Delhi.

“Strong will power is needed to continue with normal daily life as being careless is not an option,” Sood told IANS.

Asthma patients often feel inferior and disadvantaged compared to their non-symptomatic colleagues.

Shame, Guilt, Asthma
The World Health Organization estimates that 235 million people around the world suffer from asthma. Pixabay

“Being an asthma patient one is prone to minor or major attacks. A large number of patients have to be on daily treatment to keep symptoms under control,” Gyandeep Mangal, Senior Consultant in Respiratory Medicine at Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute in Delhi, told IANS.

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“The disease affects the daily life of an individual where she/he has to take a number of precautions for their well being along with medications and and at the same time have to continue with their jobs, home tasks and other work,” he added. (IANS)

Next Story

Children with Mild Asthma can Effectively Manage Condition by Using Two Inhalers

Patients in the group that used both inhalers as needed used about one-fourth the steroid dose of the group that inhaled a prescribed daily amount

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Children, Mild, Asthma
The steroid inhaler lowers inflammation and the bronchodilator, also known as a rescue inhaler, relaxes the airway during an asthma attack to quickly make breathing easier, according to the study published. Pixabay

Researchers have found that children with mild asthma can effectively manage the condition by using their two inhalers — one a steroid and the other a bronchodilator — when symptoms occur.

The steroid inhaler lowers inflammation and the bronchodilator, also known as a rescue inhaler, relaxes the airway during an asthma attack to quickly make breathing easier, according to the study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice.

“Patients in the group that used both inhalers as needed used about one-fourth the steroid dose of the group that inhaled a prescribed daily amount. We also were pleased to see that the patients and families felt that they had more ownership over their asthma management when practicing as-needed treatment,” said study first author Kaharu Sumino, Associate Professor at the Washington University.

The researchers found that this approach reduced the amount of steroid medication the children took monthly by almost 75 per cent.

Children, Mild, Asthma
Researchers have found that children with mild asthma can effectively manage the condition by using their two inhalers — one a steroid and the other a bronchodilator — when symptoms occur. Pixabay

The study included 206 African American children six to 17 years of age with mild asthma that was adequately controlled with asthma controller steroid medication. The patients were randomly assigned to one of two groups.

Each participant in one group was advised to take a dose from an inhaler containing the steroid beclomethasone as needed when symptoms arose, along with the rescue bronchodilator albuterol.

Each participant in the second group was advised to take a specific inhaled dose of the steroid beclomethasone daily, regardless of symptoms, plus the rescue bronchodilator as needed in response to symptoms.oo

At the end of the one-year study, the researchers found no differences between groups in surveys of how well the patients’ asthma was controlled, as well as no differences in breathing tests that measure lung function.

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However, the group taking daily beclomethasone, an inhaled corticosteroid, used more of the medication per month than those in the symptom-based group.

On average, children in the daily-use group used 1,961 micrograms per month, while the symptom-based group used 526 micrograms per month, cutting the amount of this medication by almost three-fourths. The reduced amount is desirable, according to the investigators, because steroids have side effects that include stunted growth. (IANS)