Does patient education modify behaviour in the management of COPD?

Patient Educ Couns. 2004 Mar;52(3):267-70. doi: 10.1016/S0738-3991(03)00101-0.


With respect to the beneficial health effects of patient education in the treatment of asthma it might be expected that the active participation of COPD-patients in the management of their disease may reduce the burden of the disease. Self-management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) includes sufficient coping behaviour, compliance with inhaled medication, attention to changes in the severity of the disease, adequate inhalation technique, and self-adjustment of the medication in case of exacerbations. In contrast to the conflicting results of the current literature, the evaluation of our structured education programme for patients with mild to moderate COPD revealed a significant improvement of inhalation technique and self-control of the disease as well as a significant reduction of exacerbations. Therefore, it may be concluded that education may modify the behaviour of patients in the management of COPD by improving self-control and self-management of the disease and thus reducing morbidity.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Behavior Therapy*
  • Bronchodilator Agents / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Compliance
  • Patient Education as Topic*
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / complications
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / prevention & control*
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / psychology*
  • Recurrence
  • Self Care / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Bronchodilator Agents