Media and memory: the efficacy of video and print materials for promoting patient education about asthma

Patient Educ Couns. 2010 Sep;80(3):393-8. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2010.07.011. Epub 2010 Aug 4.


Objective: We examined the effects of presentation medium on immediate and delayed recall of information and assessed the effect of giving patients take-home materials after initial presentations.

Methods: Primary-care patients received video-based, print-based or no asthma education about asthma symptoms and triggers and then answered knowledge-based questions. Print participants and half the video participants received take-home print materials. A week later, available participants completed the knowledge assessment again.

Results: Participants receiving either intervention outperformed controls on immediate and delayed assessments (p<0.001). For symptom-related information, immediate performance did not significantly differ between print and video participants. A week later, receiving take-home print predicted better performance (p<0.05), as did self-reported review among recipients of take-home print (p<0.01). For content about inhaler usage, although video watchers outperformed print participants immediately after seeing the materials (p<0.001), a week later these two groups' performance did not significantly differ. Among participants given take-home materials, review predicted marginally better recall (p=0.06).

Conclusion: Video and print interventions can promote recall of health-related information. Additionally, reviewable materials, if they are utilized, may improve retention.

Practice implications: When creating educational tools, providers should consider how long information must be retained, its content, and the feasibility of providing tangible supporting materials.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Asthma / therapy*
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Recall*
  • Middle Aged
  • Nebulizers and Vaporizers / statistics & numerical data
  • Pamphlets*
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Primary Health Care
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Teaching Materials / standards
  • Videotape Recording*