Assessment of the readability and comprehensibility of a CFC-transition brochure

Tina Penick Brock, Dennis M. Williams, Marie-France Beauchesne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Background: In anticipation of public confusion about the availability of medications during the metered-dose inhaler CFC phaseout period, a multidisciplinary effort has resulted in the development of a brochure designed to educate patients and health care providers about the health consequences of ozone depletion and the transition to CFC-free inhaled products. This brochure is the subject of this assessment. 

Objectives: The primary purpose of this study was to estimate the grade of reading difficulty of a brochure designed to educate patients about the change to CFC-free inhalation products. A secondary objective was to assess baseline knowledge of patients concerning CFC transition and their comprehension of this issue after reading the brochure. 

Methods: Standard readability formulae were used to assess the grade level of the CFC transition brochure. In addition, baseline knowledge of the CFC transition process and comprehensibility of the brochure were measured via a 2-page questionnaire. 

Results: The SMOG, Rix, and Flesch-Kincaid tests yielded readability at grade levels of 14, 10, and 10.4, respectively. The survey indicated that even after reading the brochure, many patients had concerns about the transition process. 

Conclusions: These results suggest that the readability of the brochure entitled Your Metered-Dose Inhaler Will Be Changing... Here Are the Facts... may not be appropriate for a large segment of the population for whom it is intended. Further, the comprehensibility assessment suggests that many patients are either unaware of or unable to understand the impending changes to their inhaled therapies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-214
Number of pages4
JournalAnnals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2000
Externally publishedYes

Cite this