CAMBRIDGE, England, May 24, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
- 91% of participants in a large scale asthma survey consider their condition to be well controlled, however, only 20% are controlled according to the GINA[*] definition
- Survey identifies that people with asthma can generally be grouped into one of four mindsets, each which may benefit from a tailored disease management approach
Today, data presented at the International Primary Care Respiratory Group (IPCRG) Scientific Meeting in Sweden highlight a marked discrepancy between patient-perceived and guideline-defined asthma control across Europe. The results from a large pan-European asthma survey, conducted by Mundipharma International in partnership with asthma experts, show that patients do not associate experiencing symptoms with poor asthma control, often because they do not realise that their asthma can be better managed. The findings also suggest that people's experiences of asthma and their attitudes towards the condition vary, and understanding these attitudes may be key to improving asthma management and outcomes.
The REALISE (REcognise Asthma and LInk to Symptoms and Experience) survey, conducted in 8,000 people with asthma aged 18-50 across 11 countries, confirmed that sub-optimal asthma management remains a major problem in Europe,,, something that experts have long been conscious of. The survey found that in the previous week, 53% of respondents with perceived asthma control had awoken due to asthma on ≥1 occasion, 56% had symptoms that interfered with their normal activities on ≥1 day, and 42% used their reliever inhaler ≥3 times. The data also distinguished subgroups of patients that can be differentiated by their attitudes and behaviours in relation to asthma.
"Evidence tells us that by recognising patient characteristics, healthcare professionals can help patients manage their condition more effectively. If we are serious about improving asthma management we need to look beyond just treating symptoms, recognise that people's experiences of asthma and attitudes towards the condition vary and focus on addressing these in different types of patients to achieve better outcomes" said Professor Thys van der Molen, University of Groningen, Netherlands.
The REALISE survey identified that people with asthma can generally be grouped into one of four mindsets, all of whom experienced some level of sub-optimal disease control, according to the GINA definition. These are the 'concordant' group, the 'over-confident' group, the 'striving' group and the 'adrift' group.
The 'concordant' group are aware of their asthma, follow healthcare professional (HCP) instructions and are fairly compliant in taking their prescribed therapy. They are confident in managing their condition and are interested in their doctor's advice to manage it better. They are the group most likely to listen to their doctor's instructions about when and how often to take their inhaler (91%) and are least likely to feel embarrassed to use their inhaler in front of others (15%). Of this group, 72% of patients are 'partially controlled' or 'uncontrolled' according to the GINA definition.
The 'over-confident' group is likely to ignore their asthma symptoms to feel normal, occasionally ignore HCP instructions and prescribed therapy and are least interested in seeking information about asthma themselves. They are the group most likely to feel very confident in managing their condition and are least likely to be concerned about it (4%). 63% of patients in this group are 'partially controlled' or 'uncontrolled' according to the GINA definition.
The 'striving' group has the strongest desire to manage their asthma better yet only 10% feel very confident in managing it on their own. They experience asthma as being a significant part of their life, hence worry about the impact it will have on their health in the future (83%). They are most likely to consider their asthma as serious (58%), adhering to therapy as prescribed by their HCP (60%). 95% of patients in this group are 'partially controlled' or 'uncontrolled' according to the GINA definition.
The fourth group, classified as 'adrift', are people with asthma that are most likely to actively look for information about their condition and have a strong desire to manage their condition better. However, they are most likely to ignore HCP advice about when and how often to take prescribed therapy (45%). They are most likely to believe that being part of an online community could make a difference to the way they manage their asthma (59%). 93% of this group are 'partially controlled' or 'uncontrolled' according to the GINA definition.
These differing patient attitudes suggest that the way in which a person perceives their asthma may play a role in how they manage their condition and subsequently, may influence the support and treatment they need. This is a first step in exploring how much of a role patient sub-types play a role in real-life and clinical practice.
"Mundipharma's support for REALISE shows our commitment to, and investment in, research which will inform the development of better treatment strategies in asthma and ultimately lead to reducing the individual and societal burden of this debilitating condition," said Professor Dr. Karen Reimer, Managing Director of Mundipharma Research. "Mundipharma is aiming to take a holistic approach to the treatment of asthma, combining both pharmacological interventions with patient education."
*Global Initiative for Asthma
Date of preparation: May 2013
-Notes to editors-
About the REALISE survey
The REALISE survey identified that people with asthma can generally be grouped into one of four mindsets, each with differing attitudes towards the condition.
Parameters Subgroups 1 2 3 4 Concordant Over-confident Striving Adrift Sample size 2264 1966 1633 2137 71% 41% 65% female 71% female female female Gender 35% male 29% male 29% male 59% male 45% less 61% less 44% less than or than or than or 61% less than equal equal equal to 35 or equal to 35 to 35 to 35 Age years years years years Very confident in managing their asthma 41% 50% 10% 16% Uncontrolled according to GINA guidelines 28% 20% 70% 68% Get short of breath when hurrying on level ground or walking up a slight hill 28% 33% 47% 41% Awoken by asthma greater than or equal to1/week 41% 32% 70% 78% Don't want to be labelled as "sick" 88% 89% 75% 74% Concerned about their asthma 11% 4% 61% 32% Consider their asthma serious 18% 9% 58% 35% Think asthma stops them living life to the full 12% 11% 59% 54% Worry about the impact of asthma on future health 41% 25% 83% 64% Anxious about not knowing when the next asthma attack is coming 25% 16% 62% 59% Follow HCP instruction 91% 74% 83% 55% Take their preventer inhaler everyday as prescribed by their HCP 52% 40% 60% 36% Feel embarrassed to use their inhaler in front of others 15% 29% 48% 57% Believe being part of an online community could make a difference to the way they manage their asthma 24% 19% 44% 59% Seek information about asthma greater than or equal to1/week 5% 1% 14% 38%
Mundipharma is committed to supporting research that informs the development of improved treatment strategies in asthma in order to reduce the individual and societal burdens of the condition. As part of this commitment, Mundipharma funded the REALISE survey which was designed to assess the attitudes of patients towards their asthma and health in general, the incidence of asthma control and symptoms, the impact of the disease on patients' daily lives, patients' relationships with their healthcare professionals in the management of asthma, and sources of information about asthma. The REALISE survey, conducted by Mundipharma International in partnership with European asthma experts, was conducted online in 8,000 people with asthma across 11 countries, including Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the UK. Participants were between 18-50 years, confirmed that they had been diagnosed with asthma by a doctor and had received at least two prescriptions for asthma in the past two years. In addition, all participants had to be active on social media and had not participated in other market research studies within the past three months. Initial results of the survey were launched on World Asthma Day in 2013.
Asthma is a chronic (long-term) inflammatory disorder of the airways which leads to recurrent episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and coughing. Asthma is a serious public health issue affecting approximately 30 million people in Western Europe. Patients with poorly managed asthma are at an increased risk of exacerbations, hospitalisation and death. Poorly managed asthma can also have a huge impact on a person's quality of life and day-to-day activities.
The Mundipharma network of independent associated companies consists of privately owned companies and joint ventures covering the world's pharmaceutical markets. These companies are committed to bringing to patients the benefits of pioneering treatment options in the core therapy areas of oncology, pain, respiratory and rheumatoid arthritis. For further information please visit: http://www.mundipharma.com
For supporting materials please visit: http://www.mundipharma.com/Press/RespiratoryResources/background
 Mundipharma International Limited data on file: REALISE - European Asthma Patient Survey Results, 2012.
 Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA). Global strategy for asthma management and prevention (updated 2012). http://www.ginaasthma.com.
 Demoly, P., K. Annunziata, E. Gubba and L. Adamek. Repeated cross-sectional survey of patient reported asthma control in Europe in the past 5 years. Eur Respir Rev 2012; 21:123, 67-74.
 Braman, S. The Global Burden of Asthma. Chest 2006; 130: 4S-12S.
Date of preparation: May 2013