"Yo Dude, Take Ur Inhaler"

Published Online: Tuesday, October 1, 2002

Text messaging reminders to use an inhaler given via cell phones may help young people with asthma better remember to take their medications, researchers reported in a letter in the British Medical Journal (September 14, 2002). The researchers studied 30 people (aged 10 to 46 years) with asthma. Each day for 1 month, the subjects received a text message on their cell phone containing a reminder to use their inhaler, health education tips, and safety messages streamed into other lifestyle-related text messages. The messages were sent from a ?virtual friend? and were written in youth-friendly text (eg, ?Yo dude, its Max reminding U 2 take ur inhaler?). The majority of the subjects said that the text messages caused them to use their inhaler more often on a regular basis. They also liked the tone and style of the messages. Many patients even replied back to the messages.

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