Disease specific knowledge about cystic fibrosis, patient education and counselling in Poland
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Departhament of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Metabolic Diseases, Poland
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2014;21(2):420–424
Introduction and objective:
The presented study assesses levels of specific knowledge of the disease among cystic fibrosis (CF) patients and their families, and evaluates the effectiveness of a targeted, disease specific education programme.

Material and Methods:
A cross-sectional survey among 462 families with a CF child evaluated their knowledge of the disease. A one year follow up survey among 200 families assessed the effectiveness of an educational programme developed to correct gaps, errors and misconceptions identified in the previously administered survey. Self-administered, comprehensive, 5-domains, 45-item multiple-choice CF Disease Knowledge Questionnaire (CFDKQ) was anonymously completed by 462 subjects.

228 respondents were male (49%), 234 female (51%). The level of disease-specific knowledge in the age groups 0–6 and 7–10 years, was significantly higher than in 11–14 and 15–18 years of age groups (p<0.005). General medical and Genetics/Reproduction knowledge was low in all patients. Significant predictors of patient and parental knowledge were age and domicile. Patients and parents rely heavily on doctors for information about CF (77%). The follow-up survey (CFDKQ) emphasized that special education programmes significantly improved levels of disease specific knowledge (p<0.0001).

If left uncorrected, the misconceptions, gaps and errors in CF knowledge identified in the presented study could result in inadvertent non-adherence to treatment, and impact on the progression and outcome of the disease. Secondly, the results demonstrate the effectiveness of targeted, disease specific information in improving disease knowledge of CF patients and their families, and highlights the value and need for the development of educational programmes for chronically ill patients and their families

Beata Klincewicz   
Departhament of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Metabolic Diseases, Poland