Shawn Aaron

Respiratory Specialist at The Ottawa Hospital

Location:
737 Parkdale Avenue 1st Floor Box 610, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Company:
The Ottawa Hospital
HQ Phone:
(613) 761-4295

General Information

Education

M.D.  - 

Web References  

1 in 3 Adults Diagnosed With Asthma May Not Have It: Study | Pollen.com

There were some cases where people obviously had asthma when they were diagnosed, said lead researcher Dr. Shawn Aaron, a respiratory specialist at Ottawa Hospital, in Canada.
But their symptoms later went into remission. In most cases, though, it could not be determined whether the patient's asthma had gone away or been misdiagnosed from the start, Aaron said. What was clear, he said, is that many patients were told they had asthma without any objective testing. Almost half had been diagnosed based only on their symptoms and their doctor's evaluation. And that's a problem, according to Aaron. He said it's "bizarre" that doctors would diagnose a chronic disease without the available objective tests. "If someone had possible symptoms of diabetes, a doctor wouldn't say, 'Oh, you have diabetes, here's some insulin,'" Aaron said. "They would order a test of the patient's blood sugar levels." To help diagnose asthma, doctors use a spirometer -- a device that measures how well a patient can inhale and exhale. Aaron could not say why so many doctors may be skipping spirometry. (Primary care doctors can do it themselves, without referring patients to a specialist, he noted.) But Aaron speculated that some doctors might not be comfortable with spirometry. "Some primary care providers may feel they don't have the expertise, or the time, to do it," he suggested. In fact, Aaron pointed out, guidelines suggest that patients have their treatment "stepped down" if their symptoms have been under good control for three months. The new findings, published in the Jan. 17 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, are not completely unexpected. Past studies had hinted that many adults with an asthma diagnosis might not really have the disease. But the current study was more rigorously done, Aaron said. A small number of people had serious medical conditions that were misdiagnosed as asthma, Aaron said: 2 percent had conditions such as heart disease and chronic lung diseases other than asthma. Aaron had this advice: If your doctor says you have asthma, ask for a spirometry test to confirm it. "If you insist on the right testing," he said, "you'll get it." The same goes for adults who think they've been misdiagnosed with asthma, or believe their asthma has remitted, he said. "Do work with your doctor," Aaron advised. SOURCES: Shawn Aaron, M.D., senior scientist and respirologist, Ottawa Hospital, and professor, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada; Brian Christman, M.D., professor, medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tenn.; Jan. 17, 2017, Journal of the American Medical Association

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1 in 3 Adults Diagnosed With Asthma May Not Have It: Study - Accurate Market Research (AMR)

There were some cases where people obviously had asthma when they were diagnosed, said lead researcher Dr. Shawn Aaron, a respiratory specialist at Ottawa Hospital, in Canada.
But their symptoms later went into remission. In most cases, though, it could not be determined whether the patient's asthma had gone away or been misdiagnosed from the start, Aaron said. What was clear, he said, is that many patients were told they had asthma without any objective testing. Almost half had been diagnosed based only on their symptoms and their doctor's evaluation. And that's a problem, according to Aaron. He said it's "bizarre" that doctors would diagnose a chronic disease without the available objective tests. "If someone had possible symptoms of diabetes, a doctor wouldn't say, 'Oh, you have diabetes, here's some insulin,'" Aaron said. "They would order a test of the patient's blood sugar levels." To help diagnose asthma, doctors use a spirometer - a device that measures how well a patient can inhale and exhale. Aaron could not say why so many doctors may be skipping spirometry. (Primary care doctors can do it themselves, without referring patients to a specialist, he noted.) But Aaron speculated that some doctors might not be comfortable with spirometry. "Some primary care providers may feel they don't have the expertise, or the time, to do it," he suggested. In fact, Aaron pointed out, guidelines suggest that patients have their treatment "stepped down" if their symptoms have been under good control for three months. The new findings, published in the Jan. 17 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, are not completely unexpected. Past studies had hinted that many adults with an asthma diagnosis might not really have the disease. But the current study was more rigorously done, Aaron said. A small number of people had serious medical conditions that were misdiagnosed as asthma, Aaron said: 2 percent had conditions such as heart disease and chronic lung diseases other than asthma. Aaron had this advice: If your doctor says you have asthma, ask for a spirometry test to confirm it. "If you insist on the right testing," he said, "you'll get it." The same goes for adults who think they've been misdiagnosed with asthma, or believe their asthma has remitted, he said. "Do work with your doctor," Aaron advised. SOURCES: Shawn Aaron, M.D., senior scientist and respirologist, Ottawa Hospital, and professor, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada; Brian Christman, M.D., professor, medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tenn.; Jan. 17, 2017, Journal of the American Medical Association

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http://www.coscny.com/PatientPortal/MyPractice.aspx?UAID=%7B4D3C7A80-04B7-4576-AF55-BC3B7BE5EA40%7D&TabID=%7BX%7D&ArticleID=718767

There were some cases where people obviously had asthma when they were diagnosed, said lead researcher Dr. Shawn Aaron, a respiratory specialist at Ottawa Hospital, in Canada.
But their symptoms later went into remission. In most cases, though, it could not be determined whether the patient's asthma had gone away or been misdiagnosed from the start, Aaron said. What was clear, he said, is that many patients were told they had asthma without any objective testing. Almost half had been diagnosed based only on their symptoms and their doctor's evaluation. And that's a problem, according to Aaron. He said it's "bizarre" that doctors would diagnose a chronic disease without the available objective tests. "If someone had possible symptoms of diabetes, a doctor wouldn't say, 'Oh, you have diabetes, here's some insulin,'" Aaron said. "They would order a test of the patient's blood sugar levels." To help diagnose asthma, doctors use a spirometer -- a device that measures how well a patient can inhale and exhale. Aaron could not say why so many doctors may be skipping spirometry. (Primary care doctors can do it themselves, without referring patients to a specialist, he noted.) But Aaron speculated that some doctors might not be comfortable with spirometry. "Some primary care providers may feel they don't have the expertise, or the time, to do it," he suggested. In fact, Aaron pointed out, guidelines suggest that patients have their treatment "stepped down" if their symptoms have been under good control for three months. The new findings, published in the Jan. 17 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, are not completely unexpected. Past studies had hinted that many adults with an asthma diagnosis might not really have the disease. But the current study was more rigorously done, Aaron said. A small number of people had serious medical conditions that were misdiagnosed as asthma, Aaron said: 2 percent had conditions such as heart disease and chronic lung diseases other than asthma. Aaron had this advice: If your doctor says you have asthma, ask for a spirometry test to confirm it. "If you insist on the right testing," he said, "you'll get it." The same goes for adults who think they've been misdiagnosed with asthma, or believe their asthma has remitted, he said. "Do work with your doctor," Aaron advised.

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