Blog: Asthma educational interventions: Summarizing the evidence


Blog: Asthma educational interventions: Summarizing the evidence

Team: TREKK Social Media Team

Date: This is not a timed event.


Today we are starting a weekly blog series highlighting pediatric emergency medicine (PEM) focused Cochrane summaries and other key resources selected by TREKK. This week, we are highlighting a Cochrane summary on the effects of asthma educational interventions in children who have visited the emergency department.

Cochrane summary:

What are the effects of educational interventions delivered to children and/or their families, who have experienced an emergency department visit with their asthma within the previous 12 months?

Asthma care for children in our society is common and costly. There is now evidence that educational intervention for children who have attended the emergency department for asthma lowers the risk of the need for future emergency department visits and hospital admissions. This review looked at studies which compared usual care for asthma to more intensive educational programmes and the results showed a statistically significant reduction in the treatment groups needing subsequent emergency department visits or hospital admissions. We were not able to determine the most effective type, duration or intensity of education that should be offered to children to offer the best asthma outcomes.

Authors' conclusions: 

Asthma education aimed at children and their carers who present to the emergency department for acute exacerbations can result in lower risk of future emergency department presentation and hospital admission. There remains uncertainty as to the long-term effect of education on other markers of asthma morbidity such as quality of life, symptoms and lung function. It remains unclear as to what type, duration and intensity of educational packages are the most effective in reducing acute care utilisation.

Check out the full Cochrane systematic review below:

Boyd, M., Lasserson, T. J., McKean, M. C., Gibson, P. G., Ducharme, F. M., & Haby, M. (2009). Interventions for educating children who are at risk of asthma-related emergency department attendance. Cochrane Database Syst Rev(2), Cd001290. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD001290.pub2


Related TREKK Resources:


Published by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons.