2018 Volume 12 Issue 4 Pages 224-232
Patients' experience of adverse reactions (ADR) and usability of drugs is important for proper use and post-marketing development of drugs, but it remains unclear whether and how patients are transmitting such information to others. The aim of this study was to explore differences in the ways in which bronchial asthma (BA) patients transmit experience of ADR to inhaled corticosteroids and usability of inhalers to others, including the reasons for these differences. A qualitative study involving focus-group interviews was conducted. Participants were fifteen Japanese BA patients treated with inhaled steroids who belonged to an association for BA patients. Data were analyzed using the constant comparative method. Almost all participants reported behavioral differences concerning ADR and usability. Participants actively expressed their doubts and anxieties about ADR to members of a patients' association and their attending physician. In contrast, information about patients' needs, including opinions and questions about the usability of steroids inhalers and anxieties regarding potential ADR to prolonged use of inhaled steroids, was shared only with members within the association and not disseminated outside, with some participants even choosing to keep it personal. Underlying this behavior was a mindset of perceiving efficacy and ADR to be more important than usability, and thinking "it is useless to inform anyone." In conclusion, behavioral differences of how BA patients transmit experience about ADR and usability was obvious, because benefit to inform usability was not perceived. It is necessary to make patients aware that transmitting their experience and comments about drugs is beneficial.