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Review: symptom-based action plans reduce acute care visits more than peak flow-based plans in children with asthma

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R L Zemek

Dr R L Zemek, Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; rzemek@cheo.on.ca

QUESTION

In children with asthma, do written action plans improve health outcomes?

REVIEW SCOPE

Selected studies compared a written action plan with no plan or another type of action plan for children ⩽17 years of age who were diagnosed with asthma based on signs of obstruction and reversibility and, for children <2 years, ⩾3 wheezing episodes. Cointerventions had to be similar in both groups, and studies reporting separate data for paediatric subgroups were included. The action plan was kept by the patient or parent between visits and included instructions for daily management of asthma, initiation or step-up treatment of acute events, and when to seek urgent medical care. Outcomes included ⩾1 unscheduled acute care visit for asthma exacerbation (emergency …

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