Effectiveness of a School-Based Hand Sanitizer Program on Reducing Asthma Exacerbations

This study has been completed.
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
University of Alabama at Birmingham
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
First received: September 10, 2007
Last updated: December 3, 2013
Last verified: December 2013

Asthma is a common, serious illness among children in the United States. Improving hand cleanliness and hygiene may prevent the spread of viruses that can cause asthma exacerbations. This study will evaluate the effectiveness of a school-based hand sanitizer program at reducing the frequency of exacerbations in children with asthma.

Condition Intervention
Other: Active Hand Sanitizer

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Effect of a School Based Hand Sanitizer Program on Asthma

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by University of Alabama at Birmingham:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Asthma exacerbations [ Time Frame: Measured at Years 1 and 2 ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Enrollment: 527
Study Start Date: January 2009
Study Completion Date: May 2012
Primary Completion Date: May 2011 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Two Step Hand-Hygiene
Hand washing plus hand sanitizer
Other: Active Hand Sanitizer
Active Hand Sanitizer
Other Name: Purell
No Intervention: Usual Care Hand Hygiene

Detailed Description:

In the United States, almost 9 million children have been diagnosed with asthma. It is a leading cause of hospitalizations and school absenteeism among children. Asthma symptoms are often seasonal, with the greatest number of exacerbations occurring in autumn and the fewest in mid-summer. Elementary school children are the most vulnerable to these seasonal changes, and many children experience an increase in exacerbations at the beginning of the school year. Recent research suggests that this seasonal peak in exacerbations is primarily caused by viral respiratory tract infections that are spread among children in school. Regular handwashing has been widely recognized as the most effective way to stop the spread of viruses and infectious illnesses. However, effective handwashing methods among school-age children can be inconsistent. Time constraints, a frequent lack of soap and towels, inconveniently located sinks, and water-saving faucets are all barriers to thorough handwashing. Improving hand hygiene through the use of antimicrobial rinse-free hand sanitizers in school classrooms may be a simple and effective way to reduce the risk of transmitting viruses that can cause asthma exacerbations. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of a school-based hand sanitizer program at decreasing exacerbations in children with asthma.

This study will enroll children with asthma who are attending one of the 32 participating schools. Each school will be randomly assigned to either use their usual hand hygiene practices in Year 1, followed by a two-step hand hygiene program including hand washing plus hand sanitizer in Year 2, or vice versa. Each participant will log in to an Internet-based data collection system on a daily basis to document their asthma symptoms and peak flow meter readings. Teachers will also log in daily to verify participants' data and to document participants' absences and the reason for the absence. Quick relief medication use will be recorded and measured through the use of a Doser device on participants' inhalers.


Ages Eligible for Study:   5 Years to 12 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Diagnosed with asthma
  • Enrolled in a participating elementary school
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00528814

United States, Alabama
University of Alabama at Birmingham, Lung Health Center
Birmingham, Alabama, United States, 35233
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Principal Investigator: William Bailey, MD University of Alabama at Birmingham, Lung Health Center
  More Information

No publications provided by University of Alabama at Birmingham

Additional publications automatically indexed to this study by ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier (NCT Number):
Responsible Party: University of Alabama at Birmingham
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00528814     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 519, R01HL086972, R01 HL086972
Study First Received: September 10, 2007
Last Updated: December 3, 2013
Health Authority: United States: Federal Government

Keywords provided by University of Alabama at Birmingham:
Hand Sanitizer
Respiratory Infection

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Bronchial Diseases
Hypersensitivity, Immediate
Immune System Diseases
Lung Diseases
Lung Diseases, Obstructive
Respiratory Hypersensitivity
Respiratory Tract Diseases
Hand Sanitizers
Anti-Infective Agents
Anti-Infective Agents, Local
Pharmacologic Actions
Therapeutic Uses

ClinicalTrials.gov processed this record on September 01, 2015