Impact of pulmonary rehabilitation on patients’ health care needs and asthma control: a quasi-experimental study

Julia Schreitmüller, Andrea Icks, Jalal Gholami, Stefan Hummel, Konrad Schultz, Christian Apfelbacher, Aziz Sheikh, Adrian Loerbroks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Pulmonary rehabilitation offers potential benefits to people with asthma. It is however unknown if rehabilitation favourably affects patients’ health care needs. We therefore examined if rehabilitation reduced needs and, in addition, if it improved asthma control. Methods: 150 patients with asthma were surveyed in three rehabilitation clinics at admission and at discharge. Additionally, we surveyed 78 participants with asthma twice four weeks apart. The latter sample (i.e. the control group) was recruited through other pathways than rehabilitation clinics. The Patient Needs in Asthma Treatment (NEAT) questionnaire and the Asthma Control Test (ACT) were completed at baseline and follow-up. Differences between baseline and follow-up and between rehabilitation and control group were examined by t-tests and chi-squared-tests. Univariate ANCOVAS were used to examine if NEAT and ACT follow-up scores differed significantly between groups. Within the rehabilitation group, linear regressions were used to examine if self-reported utilization of more interventions that addressed needs were associated with NEAT scores at follow-up. Results: At baseline, there were no differences between the rehabilitation and the control group regarding needs and asthma control. At follow-up, the rehabilitation group showed reduced needs (p<0.01) and increased asthma control (p<0.01), whereas members of the control group exhibited no changes. Univariate ANCOVAS showed that unmet follow-up needs (F(1, 212) = 36.46, p < 0.001) and follow-up asthma control (F(1, 195) = 6.97, p = 0.009) differed significantly between groups. In the rehabilitation group, self-reported utilization of more interventions was associated with reduced needs (β=0.21; p=0.03). Conclusions: This study provided preliminary evidence suggestion that pulmonary rehabilitation in adults with asthma may reduce asthma-related needs and improve asthma control.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267
JournalBMC pulmonary medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2020


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