Research & Program Areas

Older Adults with Asthma

Asthma is often thought of as a disease that mainly affects children and begins in childhood, but up to 40% of people with asthma have their first attack after age 40. Asthma has been overlooked as a problem among older adults, and many older patients go undiagnosed or under treated, even though they have the highest asthma morality rate of any age group. Under the direction of Alan Baptist, MD, CMCD investigators conducted a series of focus groups to uncover common issues that older adults face in managing their asthma. From these focus groups, a pilot intervention was developed and tailored for older patients.

Initial findings from the pilot study were promising.  With funding from the National Institute on Aging, the research team is conducting a randomized trial to evaluate the intervention’s effectiveness. Participants randomized to the intervention receive the “Older Adults with Asthma” intervention aimed at improving self-management and based on the ground-breaking work of CMCD Founding Director, Dr. Noreen Clark. Data are collected at baseline, 6 months, and 12 months, with primary outcome of health care utilization, and secondary outcomes measuring asthma symptoms, quality of life, and other themes that are critical to management of asthma in older adults.

For more information, contact Laurie Carpenter at


Asthma & Allergies, Older Adults

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