PURPOSE: This study assessed perceived ease of use, satisfaction ratings of individual device attributes and overall patient preference among the following inhalers: Genuair(r)*, Diskus(r), HandiHaler(r), and Respimat(r).
METHODS: Patients diagnosed with COPD, chronic bronchitis, or emphysema were enrolled. Patients were presented with each of the four inhalers in a latin square design and their impressions of ease of device handling were recorded. Inhaler performance: task success rate, total number of critical and non-critical errors, and ability to assemble and activate inhalers without critical errors, were measured. Inhaler satisfaction: ratings of individual and overall device attributes and qualitative ranking of perceived ease of use of the four inhalers were collected. Finally, quantitative measures were used to rank patients’ overall device preference. Data were descriptively analyzed.
RESULTS: A total of 48 patients, with a mean age of 63.5 years were enrolled in this study. Among the four inhalers, the success rate with Genuair(r) (including opening, preparing, closing, and cleaning of device) was highest (69%) followed by Diskus(r) (67%), HandiHaler(r) (35%), and Respimat(r) (23%). Genuair(r) received the highest satisfaction rating among all inhalers in all categories assessed, particularly for interface/feedback attributes. Quantitative rating of all inhalers showed Genuair(r) to be most preferred by participants followed by Diskus(r), HandiHaler(r) and Respimat(r). Age, gender, dexterity, prior inhaler experience, and number of COPD medications taken did not significantly affect inhaler preference.
CONCLUSION: In this study, the Genuair(r) inhaler was perceived by patients to be the easiest to handle and most convenient to use compared to all others tested. It was highly preferred over the Diskus(r), Handihaler(r), and Respimat(r) inhalers.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Ease of inhaler use may promote improved patient compliance, in turn maximizing therapeutic benefits. The clear feedback features and ease of use of the Genuair(r) inhaler may lead to improved success in inhaler operation and proper dose delivery. *Genuair(r) is a registered trademark of Almirall, S.A.
DISCLOSURE: Chris Hass, Employee Juliana Setyawan is an employee of Forest Research Institute. Noelia Mateo is an employee of Almirall SA.; Consultant fee, speaker bureau, advisory committee, etc. Almirall & Forest engaged Bentley University, where C. Hass, K. Engdahl, and W. Albert conducted the usability study.; Other This study was supported by Forest Laboratories, Inc, New York, USA and Almirall, SA, Barcelona, Spain.; Product/procedure/technique that is considered research and is NOT yet approved for any purpose. The Genuair inhaler is in clinical development and has not yet been approved for its commercial use for the treatment of COPD.