Older Adults Ignore Asthma Meds
The death rate from asthma for Americans age 65 and older is 14 times higher than in younger patients. Yet a whopping 53% of people over 60 with asthma don't use their inhalers. Those are among the findings of a study published in the May issue of the journal Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. What's more, the researchers also reported that asthma is frequently misdiagnosed in older adults.
In a news release quoted by HealthDay, lead author Dr. Andrew Smith of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology wrote: "Those with asthma reported more infections, physician visits and impact on health, yet only half are regularly treating the disease. Patients should regularly carry and take prescribed asthma medications, following dosage instructions. Research shows that appropriate recognition of the disease, use of asthma medications and treatment by allergists improves outcomes, including reduction of hospital visits and improvement of quality of life."
Smith went on to say that Asthma "is a complex disease that, when left untreated, can be life-threatening. It is alarming that such a large percentage of older people with asthma are letting their disease go untreated, especially since this can lead to other health problems."