From the Global Initiative for Asthma report and asthma guidelines to real-life asthma control: is there room for improvement? | Italian Journal of Pediatrics

Available guidelines for asthma management represent an important and suitable tool to make the entire medical process evidence-based, effective, and safe for patients. Their purpose is to help doctors and patients formulate the best decisions in regard to asthma management by choosing the most appropriate strategies in each specific clinical situation.

The Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) document, together with other national and international recommendations, is one of the main documents used for asthma prevention and management in Italy, but several studies reported that these recommendations are often not applied in real-life clinical practice, which consequently results in inadequate asthma control.

In this context, a substantial simplification of the GINA document and asthma guidelines may represent a feasible strategy to be pursued to ameliorate the knowledge among GPs, primary care pediatricians, and specialists taking care of children and adults with asthma.

On the other hand, another critical factor that may explain unsatisfactory control of asthma is the limited importance that all recommendations place on asthma heterogeneity. In the era of personalized medicine and target therapies, phenotype-driven asthma management may become a desirable approach for optimizing the management of asthmatic patients. In addition, digital health strategies have been investigated in the literature to improve asthma monitoring and may represent a promising tool in the future from this point of view.

Relevant stakeholders should continue to investigate how to optimize real-life asthma control to propose novel solutions to translate into clinical practice.

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