Press Releases
Published: January 26, 2021

Adherence to asthma and COPD medication differs significantly by age

Asthma and COPD medication adherence was lowest in young adults, highest in children and older adults

MADISON, Wisc., January 26, 2021 – Adherence to asthma and COPD medication differs significantly by age, diagnosis and other demographics, suggesting an opportunity to tailor adherence education to each patient, according to new research from Propeller Health.

According to the study of 8,385 patients, adolescents and adults less than 40 years of age with asthma were less adherent to their controller medication and had less well-controlled disease than other age groups. Adults over 60 and children with asthma were the most adherent and the most well-controlled, while medication adherence was lowest in young adults aged 18-29 at 39.5%.

The study was done in partnership with Children’s Hospital Colorado and published late last year in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. Researchers used Propeller’s digital health platform to track the medication use of patients with asthma or COPD. Propeller’s platform works by attaching a small sensor to a patients’ existing inhalers, which tracks medication use and delivers insights on trends in adherence, symptoms and triggers to the Propeller app.

Children ages 4-11 adhere more consistently to their medication regimen, said researchers, possibly related to their parents’ involvement in monitoring their medication use. As children become adolescents, that oversight may decline and adherence and control may worsen in this age group. Adults over 60 may exhibit higher adherence levels because their disease is more severe and needs closer management or because of higher maturity levels.

“Asthma and COPD treatment is not one-size-fits-all,” said David Stempel, MD, clinical consultant to Propeller Health and one of the authors of the paper. “Thanks to digital health, we now know that young adults generally need more support to stay adherent – and solutions like Propeller can provide that support.”

In previous clinical studies unrelated to this collaboration, the Propeller platform has been shown to increase asthma control by up to 63 percent,1 increase medication adherence by up to 58 percent,2 and reduce asthma-related emergency department visits and hospitalizations by as much as 57 percent.3

1 Merchant RK et al. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract 2016
2 Van Sickle D et al. Eur Respir J 2016
3 Merchant RK et al. World Allergy Org J 2018

About Propeller Health
Propeller Health is a leading digital health company dedicated to making life better for every person with chronic respiratory disease. Propeller creates products to more effectively treat chronic respiratory disease and improve clinical outcomes for patients through connectivity, analytics, and companion digital experiences. The Propeller platform is used by patients, physicians and healthcare organizations in the United States, Europe and Asia. Propeller Health is a wholly owned subsidiary of ResMed (NYSE: RMD, ASX: RMD). For more information, visit

You Might Also Like

Propeller Health Earns Top Honor at the 5th Annual Digital Health Hub Foundation Awards Hosted at HLTH
Awarded winning title in the health equity category of the Digital Health Hub Foundation’s 2023 Awards. (SAN DIEGO, Calif.) October 9, 2023 — Propeller Health announces its selection as a winner of the Digital Health Awards, presented by the Digital Health Hub Foundation and hosted at the HLTH global healthcare conference. Propeller earned the top […]
UC Davis Health collaborates with Propeller Health to improve clinical outcomes of COPD patients
New collaboration will integrate Propeller’s platform with UC Davis Health’s electronic health record system to efficiently provide clinicians data on patient’s disease management (SACRAMENTO, Calif.) — UC Davis Health and Propeller Health have announced a new collaboration that will offer personalized treatment for high-risk patients with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) aiming to […]
Propeller Health Named a Winner of Fierce Healthcare Innovation Awards 2022
Propeller Health’s precision digital health platform wins the Clinical Information Management category of the Fierce Healthcare Innovation Awards 2022. The platform enables physicians and care teams to proactively identify at-risk patients in between routine visits and provide more timely clinical interventions. MADISON, WI, November 15, 2022 – Propeller Health, a leader in precision digital health, […]