ResMed (NYSE:RMD) subsidiary Propeller Health today released results from a new study exploring real-world use of asthma rescue and controller inhalers that indicated that the majority of users did not use their inhalers properly.
Results from the research were published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice, the Madison, Wisc.-based company said.
Data in the study came from 7,558 patients collected by Propeller Health’s digital medicine platform the company said. The Propeller platform tracks medication usage on inhalers and delivers both medication and location data and produces insights for patients for improved self management.
While guidelines for many asthma medicines suggest two “puffs” on the inhaler, each of which should take between 30 and 60 seconds, data from the study indicated that 84% took less than 30 seconds between their first and second puffs.
Further data indicated that 67% waited less than 15 second between puffs, and that only 16% waited more than 30 seconds between puffs, which is the minimum amount of time indicated in the guidelines to appropriately dispense the medication.
“We hope that with this data from digital medicines, patients and doctors will stimulate a renewed push to address known issues in inadequate inhaler technique, which we know can have a significant impact on how patients experience their disease. We are entering an era where medicines can not only treat your disease, but new technology can help you optimize that treatment,” Dr. Stanley Szefler of Children’s Hospital Colorado said in a prepared statement.
Data also indicated that patients between 4 and 11 years had the highest level of acceptable timing, while patients between 18 and 29 had the lowest, Propeller said.
“Doctors have known for years that many patients do not follow the recommended inhaler instructions. This is the first time we’ve had objective data from digital medicines to observe it outside of the clinic. Digital medicines have the potential to not only assess inhaler technique in real-time but also notify a patient when they’re not using the inhaler properly and provide education and sources for training, which goes beyond what a clinician can do for the patient day-to-day,” Propeller medical & clinical affairs senior VP Dr. David Stempel said in a press release.
In early January, ResMed closed its $225 million acquisition of Propeller Health and its digital medicine platform.