Asthma UK community forum

Help with a case study?

Dear all,

I have recentlly begun a case study on asthma. I am intending to look into hygiene hypothesis and pollution (in other words why has the rate been increasing in recent years?) but also then go on and look at inhaler devices etc.(or treatment). I have looked at the asthma uk publications and there are small things in there that are useful but do you know of any other information sources? Also, I think that it would be interesting if I could get my hands on some inhaler devices so I can have a visual study. Do you know if this is possible? Is there may be a possibility of obtaining placebo ones maybe from manufactures. I am not sure how this process works. How would you go about this? Your help is greatly appreciated...I need information sources!

Thanks Bobby

4 Replies

There are placebo devices around, because sometimes they use them (or certainly used to) to teach people who to use them correctly. I think your best bet for getting hold of these is to contact the manufacturers directly. Some of the ones I can remember off the top of my head are Allen & Hanbury, 3M (I think), Boehringer Ingleheim (at least I think that's how it's spelt). The BNF website will give you other manufacturers, I'm sure.

Other sites? I'm not sure ... I don't know if you'd consider them as relevant, but you could perhaps try some of the American ones ... I think there's the American Asthma and Allergy Association (AAAA). Try a google search.

I hope that helps.



Try the medical journals such as Chest and Thorax - I would imagine most of the related references would be in these journals. You could also try the allergy journals. If you're at uni I would assume you have something like Athens access - in which case you could do all this via the Medline service to find the references.

As for the placebos, Becky is right - write or phone the manufacturers who will be able to advise. Or ask at your GPs surgery to see if they have any spares? Some other manufacturers are IVAX, Celltech, Sanofi-Aventis, 3M, Trinity-Cheisi, Viatris, Astrazeneca, and Schering-Plough.

Good Luck.


There is a free full text article from 2006 on the hygiene hypothesis, in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. ""The many faces of the hygiene hypothesis"", available here:


Thanks to both of you! I have contacted one company and will contact a couple of others tonight. How likely do you think the chance of me getting my hands on a couple of devices is? I'm not sure...


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