Metered-dose inhaler technique and quality of life with airways disease: assessing the value of the Vitalograph in educational intervention

J Int Med Res. 1996 Jul-Aug;24(4):369-75. doi: 10.1177/030006059602400409.


The efficacy of delivering medicines by metered-dose inhaler (MDI) is well established, and the patient's technique with MDIs is related directly to achieving the desired clinical outcome. The present study was designed to assess and improve MDI technique by using a Vitalograph Aerosol Inhalation Monitor (VAIM) in an airways disease education programme. Baseline measurements were made immediately prior to educational intervention incorporating feedback from a VAIM unit. At 6 weeks' follow-up, MDI technique was found to have regressed to the sub-optimal measures recorded at baseline prior to educational intervention. However, patients reported a significant improvement in physical function between baseline and follow-up as measured by the Rand 36-Item Health Survey (SF-36), Version 1.0. The results reinforce the need for a longitudinal educational programme for patients prescribed medications delivered by MDI. The VAIM unit provided health educators and patients with both a visual and a quantitative assessment of patients' MDI technique, and was thus of positive value as part of the intervention process.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anti-Asthmatic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Asthma / drug therapy*
  • Bronchodilator Agents / administration & dosage
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases, Obstructive / drug therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nebulizers and Vaporizers*
  • Patient Education as Topic*
  • Quality of Life*


  • Anti-Asthmatic Agents
  • Bronchodilator Agents