Patient attitudes to nebulised antibiotics in the treatment of bronchiectasis: a mixed-methods study

John Davison, Anna Robinson-Barella, Gareth Davies, Marina Campos-Hinojosa, Camille Collins, Andy Husband, Daniel Okeowo, Katy L.M. Hester, Richard Lee, Tim Rapley, Anthony de Soyza*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background Regular daily nebulised antibiotics are widely used in managing bronchiectasis. This patient population typically has severe bronchiectasis requiring multiple other medications. Given that little is known about patients’ views and preferences for such therapies, this was the focus of our study. Methods To explore patient lived-experience using nebulised antibiotics, focus groups and semi-structured interviews were conducted with patients and carers; these were audio-recorded and transcribed to enable thematic analysis. QSR NVivo software facilitated data management. The themes developed from the qualitative data analysis were then used to co-design a questionnaire to capture attitudes and preferences towards nebulised therapy. Questionnaires were completed by patients and statistical analysis was performed. Ethical approval was obtained (13/WS/0036). Results The study’s focus groups comprised 13 patients and carers, and 101 patients completed the questionnaire. Patients described nebulised therapy as an imposition on their daily routine, in turn affecting reported rates of adherence. Results demonstrated that 10% of all patients using nebulised antibiotics found these hard/very hard to administer. Further, 53% of participants strongly agreed/agreed that they would prefer an antibiotic delivered by an inhaler over a nebuliser, if it were as effective at preventing exacerbations. Notably, only 10% of participants wished to remain on nebulised therapy. Conclusions Inhaled antibiotics delivered via dry powder devices were deemed quicker and easier to use by patients. Providing they were at least as effective as current nebulised treatments, patients deemed inhaled antibiotics to be a preferable treatment option.

Original languageEnglish
Article number00735-2022
JournalERJ Open Research
Issue number3
Early online date30 May 2023
Publication statusPublished - May 2023

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