Background and Objective: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the fourth leading cause of death worldwide. It overloads the healthcare system and increase healthcare expenditure. As a patient's awareness enables him/her to acquire better self-management skills, it helps to reduce the severity and frequency of exacerbations, prevents hospitalizations, and improves health-related quality of life. The current study aims to assess the awareness amongst COPD patients about the disease itself and pulmonary rehabilitation. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional survey was carried out in order to evaluate awareness through "a COPD awareness questionnaire". This was developed and validated for its content. A total of 21 questions were included in this questionnaire. These questions were divided into two domains that included pulmonary disease (1-12) and pulmonary rehabilitation (13-21). Results: Three hundred patients were recruited of which 282 were included in the study. The subject group consisted of 177 males and 105 females. The mean age of the subjects was 63.54 ± 10.656. Awareness in the "disease domain" was 47.84% and "pulmonary rehabilitation domain" was 25.14%. Awareness about the causes of COPD was 34.8%, of common symptoms was 83.0%, and of activities of daily living that could increase breathlessness was found to be 73.8%. The need to consult a physiotherapist was reported by only 26.2%. 81.2% of the subjects believed that breathing exercise could cause breathlessness; whereas, only 19.5% were aware of secretion removal techniques. Conclusion: The findings of the study suggest an imminent need to educate the public about the disease and the scope of pulmonary rehabilitation and its role in the management of COPD. The education of patients in this regard needs to be incorporated into standard health care practice in order to improve their self-management skills and their quality of life.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine