Inadequate management of exercise-induced asthma in NYC students
Background: Prior reports suggest that inner-city, minority children with asthma face challenges in managing their disease, especially in school. Purpose: To identify problems with asthma management in students. Methodology: Qualitative interviews with 23 students with asthma (ages 8-10 yrs; 12 girls, 11 boys) from 10 Bronx, NY elementary schools. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and coded for common themes. Parents were surveyed about child's medications and asthma severity/control as per NHLBI guidelines. Results: 14 children had persistent asthma, and 9 intermittent asthma. Of 14 students with physician-prescribed controller asthma medications, 13 were not well-controlled or very poorly controlled. Based on child report, 21 students had exercise-induced asthma (EIA). The majority experienced these symptoms during school hours. Activities triggering asthma symptoms were: participation in physical education class (PE) or recess, walking upstairs and running in the hallway. The most common methods of managing EIA were sitting out during PE, drinking water and visiting the school nurse. Few students mentioned that they were supposed to use an asthma pump before exercise, but they either forgot to do so or did not bring it to school. Most students reported feeling embarrassed, shy or concerned about being teased by classmates if they use a pump in front of others. Conclusions: Our results indicate a high prevalence of undiagnosed and untreated EIA in students; inappropriate school management of EIA; poor asthma control; and potentially stigmatizing effect of using asthma pump in school. Interventions to improve asthma within an urban school setting must consider these critical issues.
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Chronic disease management and prevention
List challenges with exercise-induced asthma management in NYC students
Keyword(s): Asthma, School Health
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the principal investigator on an NIH funded K23 mentored career development award focusing on identifying and addressing barriers to physical activity in inner-city school children with asthma. Among my scientific interests has been assessing challenges in school asthma management that may prevent students' with asthma participation in physical activity.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines,
and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed
in my presentation.