Main Article Content
Purpose: To study the effects of asthma management program via smartphone applications on knowledge, inhaler used and symptoms control in patients with asthma.
Design: A randomized controlled trial.
Methods: Sixty-four patients with asthma receiving medical care at OPD in a tertiary level hospital in Bangkok, being 18 years of age or more, having partial or uncontrolled asthma symptoms, being treated with inhaled corticosteroids no less than 3 months, showing incorrect use of a corticosteroids inhaler at least one step, and having internet-connected smartphone were recruited into the study. The subjects were randomly assigned into the experimental (n = 32) and the control (n = 32) groups. The control group received regular nursing care. The experimental group received asthma management program via smartphone applications based on the IMB model for 6 weeks. The asthma symptom control was measured by the asthma control assessment based on Global Initiative for Asthma guideline. Data were analyzed using Mann-Whitney U test and Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed rank test.
Main findings: The results revealed that the participants were female (71.9%) with a mean age of 49.03 years old (SD = 13.62). There were no significant differences in demographic data between the two groups (p > .05). After the trial, the intervention group had higher scores of knowledge, correct inhaler used and asthma symptoms control than that in the control group (z = -2.57, p = .01; z = -4.93, p < .01 and z = -2.34, p = .02 respectively); and the scores after the experiment were also significantly higher when compared to before the experiment (z = -4.19, p < .01; z = -4.77, p < .01 and z = -3.91, p < .01 respectively).
Conclusion and recommendations: According to the study finding, the asthma management program via smartphone applications promoted patients who had partial or uncontrolled asthma symptoms to have better asthma symptom control. Therefore, nurses should use asthma management program via smartphone applications in patients with poor asthma symptoms control during the scheduled appointment for providing health information, promoting inhaler skill, and adherence.
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