A new study suggests that many patients aren’t waiting long enough between puffs on their inhalers and may not be getting the full therapeutic benefits of the drugs.

study published in February in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice suggests that many patients — adults and children alike — are not using their inhalers correctly, and may not be deriving the full benefits of the drugs.

In the new study, researchers used electronic medication monitors on the inhalers which recorded the time interval between the first puff and the second puff. This essentially let them follow 7,558 patients into the home to see how the devices were used.

Eighty-four percent of the patients did not wait the 30 seconds that the researchers felt was the absolute minimum time between inhalations. More than 50% waited less than 15 seconds.

Get the full story at nytimes.com