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npj Primary Care Respiratory Medicine Articles

The new title for Primary Care Respiratory Journal following an agreement with Nature Publishing Group to re-launch the journal as part of the Nature Partner Journals series.

High health gain patients with asthma: a cross-sectional study analysing national Scottish data sets

High health gain patients with asthma: a cross-sectional study analysing national Scottish data sets, Published online: 19 July 2018; doi:10.1038/s41533-018-0094-6

Insights from a detailed analysis of asthma severity in the Scottish population could help researchers develop a tool to identify high risk patients. A small percentage of asthma patients are classed as ‘high health gain’ (HHG) patients — those with severe symptoms who use healthcare services more regularly than others. However, national data on these difficult-to-identify HHG cases have not been explored. Mome Mukerjee and co-workers at the University of Edinburgh, UK, analyzed two Scottish national databases covering primary and secondary care data gathered over two years. 5.6 per cent of the Scottish population have clinician-diagnosed asthma, and only a small percentage (0.5) would be classed as HHG. Further stratified risk analysis at population level could inform future intervention strategies, including creating tools to identify patients who require significant intervention to prevent hospitalisation or death.

“Tossing a coin:” defining the excessive use of short-acting beta2-agonists in asthma—the views of general practitioners and asthma experts in primary and secondary care

“Tossing a coin:” defining the excessive use of short-acting beta<sub>2</sub>-agonists in asthma—the views of general practitioners and asthma experts in primary and secondary care, Published online: 18 July 2018; doi:10.1038/s41533-018-0096-4

“Tossing a coin:” defining the excessive use of short-acting beta2-agonists in asthma—the views of general practitioners and asthma experts in primary and secondary care

Author Correction: Recurrent lower respiratory illnesses among young children in rural Kyrgyzstan: overuse of antibiotics and possible under-diagnosis of asthma. A qualitative FRESH AIR study

Author Correction: Recurrent lower respiratory illnesses among young children in rural Kyrgyzstan: overuse of antibiotics and possible under-diagnosis of asthma. A qualitative FRESH AIR study, Published online: 28 June 2018; doi:10.1038/s41533-018-0082-x

Author Correction: Recurrent lower respiratory illnesses among young children in rural Kyrgyzstan: overuse of antibiotics and possible under-diagnosis of asthma. A qualitative FRESH AIR study

Personalising adherence-enhancing interventions using a smart inhaler in patients with COPD: an exploratory cost-effectiveness analysis

Personalising adherence-enhancing interventions using a smart inhaler in patients with COPD: an exploratory cost-effectiveness analysis, Published online: 27 June 2018; doi:10.1038/s41533-018-0092-8

Personalising adherence-enhancing interventions using a smart inhaler in patients with COPD: an exploratory cost-effectiveness analysis

Breathlessness and sexual activity in older adults: the Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing

Breathlessness and sexual activity in older adults: the Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing, Published online: 22 June 2018; doi:10.1038/s41533-018-0090-x

Treating breathlessness in older people could help improve well-being and prolong their sex lives. Chronic breathlessness in older age has psychological effects on perceived physical health, and can cause depression and anxiety, all of which can impact on levels of sexual activity. However, little data is available on the links between self-reported breathlessness and sexual activity in over 65s. Magnus Ekstrom at the University of Technology Sydney and co-workers analysed data from 688 people that participated in the Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing to explore breathlessness, perceived health and sexual activity. People suffering breathlessness were more likely to have longer periods without sexual activity compared to those without the condition. They also reported their overall health to be poorer. Further in-depth research is required into the impact of chronic breathlessness on sexual activity with age.

“A palliative end-stage COPD patient does not exist”: a qualitative study of barriers to and facilitators for early integration of palliative home care for end-stage COPD

“A palliative end-stage COPD patient does not exist”: a qualitative study of barriers to and facilitators for early integration of palliative home care for end-stage COPD, Published online: 20 June 2018; doi:10.1038/s41533-018-0091-9

Research in Belgium provides insights into the possible implementation of early palliative care (PC) for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). While many sufferers of end-stage COPD would benefit emotionally and physically from palliative home care in their final months, many only receive PC in their last few days. Charlotte Scheerens at End-of-life Care Research Group, Ghent University and Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and co-workers at Ghent University and Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) conducted focus group discussions with 28 general practitioners and 28 community nurses to establish the main barriers to and facilitators for palliative home care implementation for end-stage COPD. Barriers included the unpredictability of the disease, lack of patient understanding of COPD, and complex communication issues between staff across primary care, hospitals and community settings. Identifying ‘triggers’ to implement PC—oxygen dependence, for example—and improving communication and understanding of COPD at all levels could facilitate early integration of palliative home care (PHC).

Identifying patients with asthma-chronic obstructive pulmonary disease overlap syndrome using latent class analysis of electronic health record data: a study protocol

Identifying patients with asthma-chronic obstructive pulmonary disease overlap syndrome using latent class analysis of electronic health record data: a study protocol, Published online: 20 June 2018; doi:10.1038/s41533-018-0088-4

Identifying patients with asthma-chronic obstructive pulmonary disease overlap syndrome using latent class analysis of electronic health record data: a study protocol