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From The CriticsReviewer: Christopher Winslow, MD (Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)
Description: This book is part of the Lung Biology in Health and Disease series and is the seventh volume in this collection about asthma. While previous volumes have been devoted to educating the reader about some aspect of asthma, the disease, this book addresses the behavioral aspects of individuals with asthma.
Purpose: The purpose is to explore the evidence that demonstrates that asthma not only affects — but is affected by — psychology. As a clinician who believes in guided self-management for patients with asthma, my prior readings have focused on the medical, and not behavioral, aspects. I am familiar with the literature describing the how-tos of patient education, but I am much less familiar with the literature exploring the impact of asthma on the individual and vice versa. This book has raised my consciousness regarding these issues — a clear objective of the editors.
Audience: It will find an audience among both clinicians and researchers. Clinicians interested in self-management who read this book will become better advisors for their patients. Researchers interested in improving patient compliance, adherence, and self-management will find this book a helpful resource.
Features: This volume is a compilation of behavioral elements that play a role in the control of asthma, and is written in three parts. The first part discusses conceptual developments of the psychology of asthma, exploring the personality correlates and emotional precipitants of asthma, and the psychological correlates of asthma severity and treatment outcome in children — a topic I found most interesting. The second part focuses on the means of assessing the subjective experience of asthma with topics ranging from the more familiar quality of life measures to the less familiar sensory psychophysics. The last part is devoted to adult and pediatric self-management, individualizing self-management and adherence.
Assessment: This is an important addition to the other publications about asthma in this series as it offers a perspective on asthma management that clinicians may not otherwise hear.