Disease burden and treatment adherence among children and adolescent patients with asthma

Journal of Asthma, 2022


To assess asthma burden and medication adherence in a US de-identified patient level claims database.


This retrospective observational study used the IQVIA PHARMETRICS PLUS database to identify patients aged 5-17 years, diagnosed with asthma between 01/01/2012-09/30/2017 (asthma cohort), and those initiating treatment with twice-daily inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) or twice-daily ICS/long-acting beta2 agonists (LABA) (treatment cohorts; index date = first dispensing). Patient characteristics, asthma medication, and healthcare resource utilization were assessed over a 12-month baseline period. Treatment cohort endpoints were assessed in a 12-month follow-up period, including: adherence using proportion of days covered (PDC); persistence (no gap >45 days between dispensings).


The asthma cohort included 186,868 patients (112,689 children, mean age 7.9 years; 74,179 adolescents, mean age 14.3 years). During baseline, 34.5% used ICS or ICS/LABA, 24% used oral corticosteroids, 11.1% had ≥1 asthma-related emergency department visit, 2.2% had ≥1 asthma-related hospitalization. Among treatment cohorts, 47,276 and 10,247 patients initiated twice-daily ICS and ICS/LABA, respectively (mean ages: 9.9; 12.5 years). Mean PDC adherence to twice-daily ICS and ICS/LABA was 30% and 34% at 6 months (PDC ≥0.8: 4.3%; 6.1%); 21% and 24% at 12 months (PDC ≥0.8: 1.8%; 2.8%). Persistence with twice-daily ICS and ICS/LABA was 10.1% and 14.2% at 6 months; 5.6% and 8.0% at 12 months.


A large disease burden and unmet need exist among US children/adolescent asthma patients, evidenced by low use of, and poor adherence to, ICS-containing medication, the notable proportion of oral corticosteroid users, and higher-than-expected asthma-related emergency department and hospitalization rates.

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Averell CM, Laliberté F, Germain G, Slade DJ, Duh MS, Spahn J