The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2005 OPEN FORUM Abstracts


PARENTAL/CAREGIVER KNOWLEDGE OF THEIR CHILD"S ASTHMA, DURBAN SOUTH AFRICA

T. Puckree Ph.D. Gopal S, Govender S, Naidoo J, Thangavalu K. University of KwaZulu Natal, Durban, South Africa

The prevalence of asthma and the burden associated with it is growing not only in first world countries but also in the third world. Despite advances in management, asthma hospitalizations and mortality is not on the decline. Good parental and caregiver knowledge has been found to impact on the hospitalization rate and mortality. This study evaluated parental/caregiver knowledge and misconceptions with regard to childhood asthma and its management.150 randomly selected parents/caregivers who attend pediatric outpatients clinics in Durban, South Africa participated by fully informed voluntary consent. A semi structured validated questionnaire was used to determine knowledge. The data was expressed in percentages. The response rate was 82%. 76 % of the parents who attended the clinics believed that they had sufficient knowledge to successfully manage their children but only 4% were able to define the disease. These respondents were able to relate symptoms with precipitants (r=0,99). 26 % of the participants knew/understood the pathophysiology of the disease. 80.5% of the parents/caregivers indicated that medication did not produce any side effects. Only 17.9% of the respondents could describe the correct use of the inhaler. This study has implications for the morbidity, mortality and quality of life of the children and therefore the burden on health care. It also has implications for asthma care education in the Durban, South Africa translating into curricular changes in the undergraduate physiotherapy programme.

DISCLOSURE: T. Puckree, None

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PARENTAL/CAREGIVER KNOWLEDGE OF THEIR CHILD"S ASTHMA, DURBAN SOUTH AFRICA