Indexed on: 08 Jun '11Published on: 08 Jun '11Published in: Revue des Maladies Respiratoires
Regular use of inhaled corticosteroids as preventive treatment of asthma is an integral part of management but remains inadequate among adults. Studying the perceptions of illness and treatment beliefs is one way to understand the patient's adherence to medication.A systematic review was performed of empirical studies in adults published between 1999 and 2009, and indexed in the Pubmed, PsycInfo and Scopus databases. We investigated the associations between (1) perceptions of asthma and treatment beliefs and (2) adherence to inhaled corticosteroids. Eighteen articles meet these criteria.Perception of the chronicity of asthma and its consequences on daily life, as well as the concept that it is necessary to continue treatment in the absence of symptoms, are associated with better adherence. On the contrary, fear of side effects and the belief that treatment is ineffective in controlling symptoms, are associated with poor adherence.Patients' perceptions of asthma and inhaled corticosteroids are predictors of adherence to treatment. The identification and discussion of these issues is an essential part of building a therapeutic relationship that facilitates adherence.