Knowledge of spacer device, peak flow meter and inhaler technique (MDIs) among health care providers: an evaluation of doctors and nurses.
Background: Metered dose inhalers are cornerstone in effective management of bronchial asthma when correctly used. Most studies hitherto have focused on assessing patient’s knowledge of inhaler technique. We sought to assess the knowledge of inhaler technique, spacer device and peak flow meter among doctors and nurses in a tertiary healthcare institution in Nigeria.
Method: A cross sectional survey of nurses and doctors from emergency department, family and internal medicine; who were attending a continuous professional development lecture, was carried out. From a total of 100 questionnaires administered, we retrieved 87 of which 75 were completed, giving a response rate of 75%. It was a selfadministered questionnaire. Data was analysed with SPSS version 21.0. Descriptive statistics were done. Association
was examined using chi-square test.
Result: Mean age of respondent was 35.8 years ± 8.7, 47(62.7%) were < 40 years, 33(44%) were male, nurses were 30(40.0%). Only 28(37.3%) had ever used a peak flow meter. Only 4(14.3%) used peak flow meter frequently, while 12(26.7%) checked patient’s inhaler technique often. Only 9 out of the 75 (12%) participants all of who are doctors knew at least 3 essential steps of the techniques in using the metered dose inhaler correctly. None of the participants got all the steps for the use of pMDI totally correct.
Conclusion: Knowledge regarding the use of the metered dose inhaler and spacer device was poor. Health practitioners should have constant reminders in the form of continuous medical education to update their knowledge regarding correct inhaler technique.
Keywords: asthma, inhalers, knowledge, doctors, nurses