A model to integrate patient preferences into delivery systems: the importance of end-user input into pulmonary delivery

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Asthma is a public health problem estimated to affect approximately 334 million people worldwide. A significant amount of those affected with asthma are children. Asthma is a chronic disease that is characterized by inflammation and constriction of the airways, leading to breathing difficulties. It is estimated that in the USA alone, the direct cost for asthma in both adults and children was more than $56 billion annually in 2007 and is responsible for reduced quality of life. Asthma cannot be cured, but it can be controlled by medication. The most common and efficacious medications to treat asthma are delivered in aerosol form via nebulizer inhaler devices, which include pressurized metered-dose inhalers and dry-powder inhalers (DPIs). Unlike many oral dosage forms, inhaler compliance is composed of two independent components, temporal adherence and inhaler technique, of which much research has focused on temporal adherence due to limited methods available to monitor longitudinally. For this reason, the aim of this editorial is to describe problems with inhaler technique from published literature as well as propose a new method of integrating patients into the therapeutic delivery research process to reduce patient error, which may improve asthma outcomes.


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