Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research

Project: Near Fatal Asthma in Children and Adolescents

A prospective survey of Near Fatal Asthma in Children and Young People to identify risks, acute care and inform future care bundle that may reduce risk of death in this population

This is an 18-month prospective British Paediatric Surveillance Unit survey of Near Fatal Asthma in Children and Young People to identify current management and risk factors. The 24-month follow up of cases will help inform future risk. A care bundle will be developed that could be used to reduce risk of death in this population.

Project overview

Asthma is a very common health condition in the UK and the Republic of Ireland (ROI). The UK has more deaths from asthma in children and young people (CYP) than any other developed health country.  Asthma attacks can be different every time and for every person. There is a type of attack which makes it more likely that person will have another severe attack, and maybe die. These are called “near fatal asthma attacks”.

Work by an Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research PhD student, Ann McMurray, has developed a common definition of a ‘near fatal asthma attack’. Ann’s work also showed that depending on where they live, the care people receive after a ‘near fatal asthma attack’ can be very different. We want that to change.

Through the British Paediatric Surveillance Unit, we will perform a prospective surveillance of near fatal asthma in children aged 5-15 years across the UK and ROI. Each case will be followed up for 24 months. The study will link with PERUKI (Paediatric Emergency Research UK and Ireland) and PCCS (Paediatric Critical Care Society) to ensure we identify all cases. We will look at acute management of near fatal asthma in CYP to identify areas for future research, use data linkage to understand the impact of environmental factors on near fatal asthma attacks and follow up data to understand future risk and best practice for follow up.

What we will do

In this study, we want to find out:

  • how many people have had a near fatal asthma attack
  • whether there are common features found in those who suffer one of these attacks, in particular for environmental factors
  • what care they received for their attack and how they responded to treatment
  • what happened to their asthma in the following two years and who provided care to them in this time

We hope the results of this study will:

  1. help identify features that could reduce the risk of a near fatal asthma attack
  2. improve the consistency of care people receive after a near fatal asthma attack, which may in the future reduce the number of asthma deaths

Key People

Steve Cunningham

Steve Cunningham

headshot of Ann McMurray

Ann McMurray

Principal Investigator,

Professor of Paediatric Respiratory Medicine

Co-Investigator,

Centre PhD student

Based at: University of Edinburgh Based at: NHS Lothian
Steve's Profile Ann's PhD Profile
 

Peter Davis

 

Mark Lyttle

Co-Investigator,

PCCS contact

Co-Investigator,

PERUKI contact

Based at: Bristol Children's Hospital Based at: Bristol Children's Hospital
Peter's Profile Mark's Profile
 

Lisa Findlay

 

Des Cox

Co-Investigator,

Peripheral hospital contact

Co-Investigator,

ROI contact

Based at: Dumfries General Hospital Based at: Our Lady's Children's Hospital, Crumlin
  Des' Profile

Timeline

August 2021 - January 2025

Funding

Chief Scientist Office of the Scottish Government Department of Health – Health Improvement, Protection and Services Research HIPS/20/21

 

Photo by fauxels from Pexels