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PLoS By Category | Recent PLoS Articles
Immunology - Non-Clinical Medicine - Respiratory Medicine

Patients with Asthma and Comorbid Allergic Rhinitis: Is Optimal Quality of Life Achievable in Real Life?
Published: Friday, February 17, 2012
Author: Fulvio Braido et al.

by Fulvio Braido, Ilaria Baiardini, Stefania Menoni, Federica Gani, Gian Enrico Senna, Erminia Ridolo, Veruska Schoepf, Anthi Rogkakou, Giorgio Walter Canonica

Objectives

Asthma trials suggest that patients reaching total disease control have an optimal Health Related Quality of Life (HRQoL). Moreover, rhinitis is present in almost 80% of asthmatics and impacts asthma control and patient HRQoL. We explored whether optimal HRQoL was reachable in a real-life setting, and evaluated the disease and patient related patterns associated to optimal HRQoL achievement.

Methods and Findings

Asthma and rhinitis HRQoL, illness perception, mood profiles, rhinitis symptoms and asthma control were assessed by means of validated tools in patients classified according to GINA and ARIA guidelines. Optimal HRQoL, identified by a Rhinasthma Global Summary (GS) score =20 (score ranging from 0 to 100, where 100 represents the worst possible HRQoL), was reached by 78/209 (37.32%). With the exception of age, no associations were found between clinical and demographic characteristics and optimal HRQoL achievement. Patients reaching an optimal HRQoL differed in disease perception and mood compared to those not reaching an optimal HRQoL. Asthma control was significantly associated with optimal HRQoL (?2?=?49.599; p<0.001) and well-controlled and totally controlled patients significantly differed in achieving optimal HRQoL (?2?=?7.617; p<0.006).

Conclusion

Approximately one third of the patients in our survey were found to have an optimal HRQoL. While unsatisfactory disease control was the primary reason why the remainder failed to attain optimal HRQoL, it is clear that illness perception and mood also played parts. Therefore, therapeutic plans should be directed not only toward achieving the best possible clinical control of asthma and comorbid rhinitis, but also to incorporating individualized elements according to patient-related characteristics.

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