In the UK approximately 4 million adults have asthma. In 2004, over 1200 adults died from asthma in the UK and in 2007 hospital episode statistics recorded 40,000 adult emergency admissions due to asthma[1]. The overall cost of treatment of patients with asthma in the UK has been estimated to be over £1 billion/year.

This session focuses on the treatment of adult patients with previously diagnosed asthma that present to the Emergency Department with an acute episode of breathlessness.

The most recent guidelines published by the British Thoracic Society (BTS) in September 2016 state that patients who died from asthma had a number of factors contributing to their death. These ranged from severity of disease, their medical management and their behaviour or psychosocial status.

In their 2019 asthma update, the BTS noted that:

  • 5.4 million people are currently being treated for the condition in UK
  • On average, 3 people die from an asthma attack in the UK every day
  • The NHS spends around £1 billion a year treating and caring for people with asthma.
  • In 2017 (the most recent data available) 1,484 people died from an asthma attack in the UK

These guidelines are evidence based. The July 2019 guideline update forms the basis for the recommendations made in this session. Although childhood asthma is not considered further in this session, adult guidelines for acute asthma are appropriate for use on children aged over 12 years old.

Post a comment

Leave a Comment