Eva Trillo Calvo1, Carlos Colás Sanz2, *
1Centro de Salud Campo de Belchite, Zaragoza, España - 2Servicio de Alergología, Hospital Clínico-Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria de Aragón, Zaragoza, España
Introduction: Allergic rhinitis (AR) is a highly prevalent disease with a great impact on quality of life. The aim of the study was to assess the management of AR in the primary care setting in Spain.
Material and methods: A total of 248 primary care physicians participated in a multicenter cross-sectional survey study and completed a 23-item ad hoc questionnaire.
Results: Ninety-three percent of the participants had more than 10 years of professional experience, excluding residency training. There was consensus in terms of diagnostic criteria: severity according to ARIA criteria (94.3%) and persistent AR if symptoms are present for more than 4 days/week and more than 4 weeks (94.8%). A total of 71.8% had difficulties identifying criteria for referral to specialized care. More than 90% considered that undertreatment was common, 54.5% recognized that their knowledge of the different treatment modalities of AR was insufficient, and 83% stated that management of patients with AR and asthma was difficult. Scientific evidence of efficacy and safety and the prescription of a drug that facilitates adherence were the characteristics with the highest scores in order of importance. Follow-up should be performed by primary care physicians (92%) or by a multidisciplinary team formed by primary care professionals and specialists at the hospital (88.4%).
Conclusions: Patients with AR are adequately managed in primary care but general training deficiencies have been recognized, especially with regard to the combination of AR and asthma. A consensus document defining the criteria for referral of patients with RA to specialists in the hospital should be developed.
Allergic rhinitis, primary care, delphi method, asthma.