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Longitudinal outcomes of different asthma phenotypes in primary care, an observational study.

Khusial, R.J., Sont, J.K., Loijmans, R.J.B., Snoeck-Stroband, J.B., Assendelft, P.J.J., Schermer, T.R.J., Honkoop, P.J. Longitudinal outcomes of different asthma phenotypes in primary care, an observational study. NPJ Primary Care Respiratory Medicine: 2017, 27(55)
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While asthma presentation is heterogeneous, current asthma management guidelines in primary care are quite homogeneous. In this study we aim to cluster patients together into different phenotypes, that may aid the general practitioner in individualised asthma management.

Method
We analysed data from the ACCURATE trial, containing 611 adult asthmatics, 18–50 year-old, treated in primary care, with one year follow-up. Variables obtained at baseline (n = 14), were assessed by cluster analysis. Subsequently, established phenotypes were assessed separately on important asthma outcomes after one year follow-up: asthma control (Asthma Control Questionnaire (ACQ)), quality of life (Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire (AQLQ)), exacerbation-rate and medicationusage.

Results
Five distinct phenotypes were identified:
The first phenotype was predominantly defined by their early onset atopic form of asthma.
The second phenotype mainly consisted of female patients with a late onset asthma.
The third phenotype were patients with high reversibility rates after bronchodilator usage.
The fourth phenotype were smokers and the final phenotype were frequent exacerbators.
The exacerbators phenotype had the worst outcomes for asthma control and quality of life and experienced the highest exacerbation-rate, despite using the most medication.
The early onset phenotype patients were relatively well controlled and their medication dosage was low. (aut. ref.)