Objectives: To ascertain where and how inhalers were removed after finalizing their use, and to determine how the information about recycling was received, as well as the importance of having reusable inhalers.
Methods: Epidemiological, observational, cross-sectional and multicenter study performed in the community pharmacies of the Autonomous Community of Madrid, through the application of a voluntary and anonymous questionnaire that analyzed the knowledge and attitudes regarding the recycling of inhalers among adult users treated with inhalers.
Results: From 22 community pharmacies, a total of 303 subjects (mean age 57.5±19.9 years; 46.7% men; mean time of inhalers` use 9.6±9.8 years; reason for use: asthma: 46.2%, COPD: 25.7%) were included. Overall, 66.2% and 67.5% of users gave a high importance to the recycling of inhalers and the availability of having a monthly rechargeable inhaler every 6 months, respectively. With regard to recycling, 42.9% of users recycled in the SIGRE point of the pharmacy. Only 33% of users had been informed about the place of delivering the inhaler, and in this context, in most cases this was performed by the pharmacist (76.3%).
Conclusions: Despite the majority of users consider that it is important the recycling of inhalers and the availability of re-usable inhalers, only one third refer having been informed about the place of delivering the inhaler. Information campaigns about the importance of recycling of inhalers and how to do it are warranted. In this setting, the community pharmacist could play a key role.