Adherence to Inhaled Therapy and Its Impact on Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

Magdalena Humenberger; Andreas Horner; Anna Labek; Bernhard Kaiser; Rupert Frechinger; Constanze Brock; Petra Lichtenberger; Bernd Lamprecht


BMC Pulm Med. 2018;18(163) 

In This Article


Due to administrative limitations, we could only include patients insured by the Upper Austrian Health Insurance (OÖGKK). Therefore, we have no data for subjects insured by other health insurance companies. However, the Upper Austrian Health Insurance covers more than 80% of the general Upper Austrian population.

As a noninterventional study, we were not able to use electronically monitored inhalers, adherence scores or questionnaires to evaluate adherence. Although prescription refill rates are widely used in scientific literature, they may not perfectly reflect the electronically monitored inhaler use of COPD patients.[34] Moreover, refill rates might depend on social support and cognitive abilities of COPD patients.[35–37] Unfortunately, there is no data about the social framework of our patients available. As adherence was classified by dispensed inhalers, we are not able to evaluate if the patients have taken their medication correctly.