Research Article

Is childhood asthma being underdiagnosed and undertreated?

Br Med J 1978; 2 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.2.6133.331 (Published 29 July 1978) Cite this as: Br Med J 1978;2:331
  1. A N Speight

    Abstract

    Thirty-four cases of asthma in children referred to outpatient clinics in Newcastle upon Tyne (16 cases) and London (18 cases) were reviewed. In both cities there was evidence of inappropriate diagnosis and treatment by general practitioners. One of the main factors seemed to be doctors' reluctance to use the word "asthma," even when a history of episodic wheezing strongly suggested the diagnosis. Freer use of the word "asthma" might help parents to co-operate in managing asthmatic children and allow them to be better prepared to cope with severe asthmatic attacks if they occur.