Interactive support interventions for caregivers of asthmatic children.J Asthma. 2013 Aug; 50(6):649-57.JA
Asthmatic children and their parents constantly need to adjust their lifestyles due to asthma attacks. We evaluated the effectiveness of a self-management interactive support (SMIS) program for caregivers of asthmatic children.
Children with persistent asthma were randomized into two groups, one receiving SMIS and the other receiving usual care (the control group). The SMIS program involved a three-month multifaceted behavioral intervention. Changes in the caregivers' knowledge and attitude regarding self-management, children's lung function, and number of emergency department visits and hospital admissions were examined at 12 months post-enrollment.
Sixty-five asthmatic children and caregivers (78% follow-up) completed the study. Primary caregivers in the SMIS group had significant improvements in knowledge and attitude regarding asthma compared to those in the control group (p < .05). Most importantly, knowledge about asthma medications and exacerbations significantly improved and attitudes toward medication adherence and dealing with asthma care became more positive in the SMIS group. The forced expiratory volume in one second was significantly improved in the SMIS group after 12 months (p < .05), and performance in the methacholine challenge test at the end of the study was significantly better in the SMIS group (p < .05). Participants in the SMIS group also had a lower rate of emergency room use (p < .05).
The SMIS program for the self-management of asthma in children by their caregivers improved lung function and reduced the number of visits to the emergency departments. Interactive support interventions reinforce learning incentives and encourage self-care and maintenance of therapeutic regimens.