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Asthma - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

What is Asthma ?

Airways become narrow and get constricted and there is excess mucus production in asthma. It makes breathing difficult and also triggers wheezing and coughing. For some asthma is just a minor ailment. Others might not be able to function and may have near fatal experiences. Even though it can’t be cured. The symptoms are manageable. As it can change with time, it is necessary that your doctor tracks your symptoms and signs and adjusts treatment as required. It isn’t known as to why some people have asthma while others don’t. Genetic and environmental factors are thought to play a role in this.

What trrigers Asthma?

  • Being exposed to various substances and irritants that might trigger allergies or the asthma symptoms and signs.
  • Airborne particles like dust mites, pollen, pet dander, cockroach waste and mold spores.
  • Common cold
  • Exertion induced
  • Chilly air
  • Emotional overload and stress
  • Irritants and air particles like smoke
  • Certain medicines like aspirin, ibuprofen, beta blockers and naproxen
  • Preservatives and sulfites
  • GERD or gastro esophageal disease, an acid reflux condition

The chances of asthma increase for a number of reasons. These are:

  • Having a relative with asthma
  • Having other allergic conditions like allergic rhinitis or atopic dermatitis
  • Smoking excessively
  • Having a high BMR
  • Being exposed to passive smoke
  • Being exposed to pollution or fumes
  • Having an occupation which involves dealing with chemicals

Diagnosis and Treatment

It is necessary to do a physical exam to rule out other possibilities like COPD (chronic-obstructive pulmonary disease) or respiratory infections. The doctor will conduct these tests and question about your symptoms and signs.

  • Lung Function Tests- Pulmonary or lung function tests can determine the amount of air moving out and in during breathing. They may include: Spirometry- This tests for the widening of the bronchi by seeing how much air is exhaled after deep breathing.
  • Peak flow- A peak-flow meter is quiet a simple instrument that checks the intensity of the exhalation. A low reading on the meter might indicate that the lungs aren’t working to their best efficiency and that the asthma is deteriorating. A doctor will instruct you on how the peak flow measurements are to be interpreted and tracked.
  • A medicine called bronchodilator is taken after or before a lung function test, to open the airways up.
Can't be cured, but treatment helps Self diagnosable Lab test not required Chronic: can last for years or be lifelong Non communicable
Pain in the chest Troubled breathing Wheezing Irritated or inflammed throat Mouth breathing Tightness of chest

Popular Health Tips

4 Common Lung Diseases Which Affect Women

MD - Pulmonary, DTCD
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
4 Common Lung Diseases Which Affect Women

Lung diseases have become very common for people living in the urban areas all over the world. Diseases in the lungs are the most common medical conditions which affect millions of people globally; however, the numbers of women who have been affected by numerous lung diseases are more in comparison to men. There are a number of lung diseases which differ from each other in terms of severity and their treatment. Some of the most common lung diseases which affect women mostly are given below.

1. Asthma
Asthma is the condition in which the lungs and bronchial tubes get inflamed and become extremely sensitive as well. In this condition, the airways become easily irritated mostly because of smoking cigarettes or being in a polluted area. Your lungs and bronchial tubes may also get sensitive to allergens like dust mites and pollen. Difficulties in breathing, regularly coughing and wheezing are some of the problems which are caused by Asthma. This condition affects women more than men because of the presence of high level of testosterone protect them from the disease, if the research is to be believed.

2. Lung Cancer
Lung cancer is that deadly disease which affects women more than men. The leading cause of cancer deaths in women, this disease is largely linked to smoking cigarettes. However, it is often observed that women who have quit the habit are more likely to get affected by the disease. It is believed that estrogen plays a major role in the development of lung cancer in women as treatment with progesterone and estrogen after hitting menopause can increase your chances of getting affected by lung cancer.

3. Pulmonary Emboli
Blood clots which start forming in one part of the body, which is usually the legs, and slowly travel to various other parts of the body which end up getting stuck in the lungs are called pulmonary emboli. These small blood clots which get stuck in the lungs cause problems in breathing and affect more women than men, in general. The pulmonary embolus is also responsible for reducing the oxygen flow in the blood-streams. Women who take contraceptive pills or go through hormone treatments are often at the risk of developing this problem.

4. Pulmonary Hypertension
Another lung disease which affects women more than men is pulmonary hypertension. The blood pressure in this lung disease becomes dangerously high. The right side of the heart starts to work harder due to the increased pressure built. This results in the oxygen-rich blood to be pumped back to the lungs. Childhood infections and other lung problems are often observed as the reason for women to develop this issue.

3 people found this helpful

Allergy Testing By Skin Prick Method - An Insight!

ENT Specialist, Delhi
Allergy Testing By Skin Prick Method - An Insight!

While a sizeable population suffers from allergy issues every year, treating them is often possible without an extensive diagnosis. However, diagnosis of the allergen becomes crucial when the problem recurs several times in a year.

The skin prick testing is a reliable means of diagnosing the IgE-mediated (immunoglobulin E) allergic disease in people who have asthma, urticaria, rhinoconjunctivitis, atopic eczema, anaphylaxis, and drug allergy.

It offers evidence for confirming the diagnosis of the type I allergy. The best aspect of allergy testing by skin prick method is that it is minimally invasive, inexpensive and the results are immediately available when carried out by trained professionals.

Why is skin prick test conducted?
Skin prick test is usually used for diagnosing the food allergy symptoms which are typically caused by the interaction between a food allergen and the IgE antibody. To diagnose a food allergy, the allergy expert may recommend you undergo a skin prick test for measuring the number of antibodies present.

What can you expect?
During the skin prick test, the allergist places a drop of solution which contains the food allergen on the back or the forearm. When testing the fruits and vegetables, food is used in place of solution. In this allergy testing method, the doctor would use a needle or a plastic probe for gently pricking or scratching the skin for allowing a small amount of solution to penetrate the skin surface. This method is not painful, and no bleeding is involved in it. Though many people think that the process would cause much discomfort, the reality is that it feels similar to a scratch caused by fingernails.

On the basis of the case history, a patient may need to be tested for just one or many foods. The results are almost immediate; You can get them within half-an-hour of the test. The positive results of the test are indicated by a wheal which causes a raised white bump encircled by a small circle of itchy red skin. Though the size of the wheal is not the accurate indicator, a large wheal generally indicates that the patient is affected by food allergy.

How accurate is skin prick testing?
The skin prick allergy testing hardly produces any false negatives which indicate that you are not allergic to a food. Having negative results is synonymous with not being allergic to the food for which you are tested. On the other hand, positive results are also not always accurate. About 50 percent of cases show false positives which mean the positive result is shown even though you are not allergic to that particular food.

This simple test can be the means of identifying the allergens which will help determine the allergy prevention plan. Consulting an allergist before undergoing the test is essential.

2624 people found this helpful

Allergic Asthma - Dealing With Person Suffering From It!

Diploma In Allergy & Clinical Immunology, MBBS, MD - Paediatrics, M.Med - Family Medicine
Allergist/Immunologist, Kochi
Allergic Asthma - Dealing With Person Suffering From It!

 Allergic asthma affects a vast majority of adults, being one of the most common respiratory disorders. There are various triggers, and with environmental pollution on the rise, the incidence of asthma has grown too. If there is a person in the family with asthma, it is not just the person who has it, but the entire family who needs to be sort of prepared to handle it. In most cases, there could be attacks or exacerbations and it is extremely important for the person who is in the vicinity to know how to act. This timely and prompt action could sometimes prove to be a life-saver.

  1. Handy inhaler: If your loved one has asthma, it is advisable to keep an inhaler handy. Practice how to use the albuterol nebulizer, which often is a lifesaver when a person has an acute asthma attack.
  2. What to do: In most cases, the doctor writes out an action plan that details what should be done if there is an attack. The person who could be potential caretaker should familiarize with this and probably do a mock trial so they are ready when required.
  3. Monitor: Whether it is a young or an elderly person, teach them to monitor peak flow levels. The peak flow meter is easy to use and the readings can help identify if there is any need to be watchful.
  4. Clean up the house: For allergic asthma, the accumulated dust in the furniture and animal dander are great triggers. It helps to keep the house clean by periodic cleaning of the carpets, mopping up the tiles and flooring. This helps to remove accumulated dust and prevents attacks. Avoid accumulating soft toys which tend to collect dust. Bookshelves need to be cleaned periodically.
  5. Smoking: Avoid smoking at home or as much as possible when the asthmatic person is around.
  6. Pets: If possible, avoid them as they produce dander which can trigger an attack.
  7. Empathy: An asthma patient requires a lot of empathy. One should understand that the asthmatics are also affected by their attacks, which in turn controls their overall schedule. Try to slow down and keep pace with them. Do not push for exercise or changes beyond a certain point, as the person knows how much they can stretch. Help them manage weight and stress, as these lead to acute attacks.

Healthify your lifestyle: Eat healthy, avoid foods which can induce an attack, get a good night’s sleep, avoid triggers, maintain weight, avoid smoking, and manage stress. Emotionally, match up their pace and show empathy. All these will definitely produce better control over asthma.

Despite this, it is possible to have an attack, so be cautious. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

4326 people found this helpful

Asthma - Gendered Susceptibility And Prevention Of Attacks!

MD - Pulmonary, DTCD
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
Asthma - Gendered Susceptibility And Prevention Of Attacks!

All human beings breathe, that is how they live. Asthma is when the one thing that happens automatically for your sustenance decides to drop the ball. Asthma is the most common pulmonary disease that has people feeling breathless left right and the centre. It occurs when the trachea becomes constricted and the passage for the flow of air decreases dramatically thereby leaving people out of breath and wheezing, for they are unable to breathe. The bronchial tubes that help you breathe protest when you exert them and in turn close up so that you are unable to keep working or breathing properly. The lungs too get inflamed and participate in this ordeal.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for asthma, that being said, females are more prone to asthma than males and that makes females doubly unlucky. Asthma is a combination of genetic inheritance and environmental factors and more likely to occur in women because hormones are involved in the aggravation or retardation of asthma attacks.

Testosterone increases in men as they hit puberty and testosterone has been studied and it shows a particular quality that makes one immune to asthma. Women, on the other hand, have a healthy dose of a particular kind of immune cells that make them prone to asthma. These cells make proteins that lead to a mucus build up and inflamed lungs and causes wheezing along with the loss of breath. This is a huge breakthrough discovery in the field of medicine particularly for this disease since there is no discernible cure for asthma. Administering testosterone cannot be used as a line of treatment because hormone treatment is not a cakewalk but this finding can help make asthma treatments more precise and targeted.

Notwithstanding all that has been discussed above, asthma is a serious deterrent in your daily activities and once you start suffering from it, it is highly unlikely you can ever live without it, so here are a few quick steps to prevent an asthma attack:

  1. Inhalers: Obviously carry your emergency inhalers at all costs, you never know what can trigger an asthmatic attack, it could be physical activities, your surroundings, pollution or smoke thus best be prepared. Albuterol containing medication can be used for quick relief.
  2. Cleaning homes: Keep your house and living environment clean, devoid of dust and any other allergens that may trigger your attacks. Identify your triggers and stay clear of them. Cockroaches also spread allergens into the home environment. Try and eliminate all possible hideouts and seal any open pipes. If you are hit by an attack get away from the inducer and look for an air-conditioned room with clean air.
  3. Deep breathing: Regulate your breathing by sitting down and staying calm. Taking deep breaths will help open up constricted passage-ways by inducing a normal pattern. Since attacks occur due to mucous build-up, consider drinking a hot beverage that will help open up your airway and breathe easy.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3079 people found this helpful

Asthma - What Can Trigger It?

MBBS, Diploma In Tropical Medicine Health, MRCP(UK)
Allergist/Immunologist, Chennai
Asthma - What Can Trigger It?

Asthma is a chronic lung disease that causes inflammation and narrows the airways in the lungs. The problem of Asthma is often hereditary but there are cases where asthma develops due to certain environmental factors. In such a condition, the airways become swollen and the muscles around the airways tighten making it difficult to breathe. Sometimes it is called bronchial asthma or reactive airway disease. Asthma symptoms are experienced when the airways tighten, inflame or fill with mucus. Some of the common symptoms include:

Severe asthma attacks can be life-threatening, therefore one needs to be very careful and take all the necessary precautions in order to avoid any kind of triggers. Asthma attacks occur only when something irritates your lungs.

There are two types of asthma

  • Allergic asthma: Allergic asthma develops due to the continued exposure to an allergen.
  • Non-Allergic Asthma: It usually caused by stress, exercise, irritants in the air or due to some illnesses like cold or flu.

Some of the triggers are:

  • Extreme weather conditions such as extremely cold or extremely dry, wet or windy weather
  • Strenuous exercise
  • Irritants in the air such as smoke and strong odors.
  • Indoor allergens such as dust
  • Outdoor allergens such as pollens from grass, trees and weeds.

Asthma Management

  • If you are suffering from asthma, you should be aware of all the asthma triggers and avoid them at all costs. It can be very serious if asthma is misdiagnosed or left untreated. A person with asthma can lead a happy and productive life by taking proper treatment at the right time getting himself properly diagnosed by an allergist. Your allergist will give you a treatment plan.
  • Once your asthma has been controlled, the patient can return to regular life immediately and no hospital stay or visit is required.
  • The doctors usually use a combination of medication and breathing exercise to treat the problem of asthma effectually. It is, however, important to remember that asthma changes with time, which makes it essential to be in touch with your doctor to adjust treatment as needed. When properly managed with a good treatment plan and guidance of your doctor, you can live a perfectly normal life and do things that you enjoy.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

4021 people found this helpful

Popular Questions & Answers

Hello, I am 18 year old and I am suffering from cough and also I am suffering from asthma can you pls suggest me suitable medicine.

MD - Pulmonary, DTCD
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
PFT to confirm asthma. Use LABA and ICS combination by inhalation with spacer if asthma confirmed.

Sir, I am suffering from allergic problem in my breath last long time and my age 27 years. I am really trouble so what can I do basically I am using montair LC but I want a permanent solution it is possible. Sir I belongs to a poor family we do not have enough money, tablet also costly.

MD - Pulmonary, DTCD
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
Haemogram and Total IgE to assess role of allergy. Can get allergy tests by prick test to identify allergens. Can plan immunotherapy.
1 person found this helpful

I am using aerocort Inhaler once or twice a day since 10 years. Now My department free medical facility clinic has given FORACORT 200. PLEASE ADVICE CAN I USE FORACORT 2OO?

MD (Physician), MD (Pulmonology)
Pulmonologist, Bareilly
Dear Lybrate user, Surely. Shifting from Aerocort to Foracort will give you better relief, longer periods of remission and symptom free time. Also enquire about Yearly Influenza Vaccination to have a better care of Lungs. Wishing you Good Health.
1 person found this helpful

My age 24 years old I am female. I am an asthmatic patient. Fomtide and tiova inhaler are used now. Tablets are not used then ok.

MD - Pulmonary, DTCD
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
Fomtide should be sufficeint in your case. In asthmatics tiova is used if uncontrolled with fomtide or one is suspecting copd along with

I’m an asthma patient and the doctor has prescribed me budamate 200. I have been taking that as SOS since 5-6 years now. However, today I purchased a Budate 200 by mistake. Can I use budate 200 instead of budamate 200?

MD - Pulmonary, DTCD
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
Budate is only anti inflamatory and can b eused in controlled asthma. Need bronchodialator formatrol which is in budamate in asthma is not under control.
3 people found this helpful

Table of Content

What is Asthma ?

What trrigers Asthma?

Diagnosis and Treatment

Play video
Asthma may cause difficulty breathing, chest pain, cough and wheezing. These breathing difficulties can take different forms in different people and even within the same person over time.
Play video
Things To Know About Asthma
Asthma may cause difficulty breathing, chest pain, cough and wheezing. The symptoms may sometimes flare up. There are many causes like pollution, smoking, and more. So It can be cured by medication. We should have a healthy diet and lifestyle to prevent it.
Play video
Bronchial Asthma
Bronchial asthma triggers may include air pollution and toxins, emotional stress and anxiety, infections such as colds, flu, or pneumonia and many more.
Play video
Know More About Asthma
I am Dr. M.C Gupta. Practicing at Jeevan Jyoti Hospital, Faridabad. I am a pulmonologist and going to talk about asthma.

Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways. Leading to hyper responsiveness of the airways, causing breathlessness, chest tightness, cough which is usually in the night or early morning hours. It should be reversible by it self or by drugs. Prevalence of asthma is in India between 1.3 to 2.5% and it is higher in the children and go even up to 10%. Type of asthma are childhood asthma, adult onset asthma, chronic asthma, occupational asthma and difficult to treat asthma. Asthma is usually genetic or environmental factors. The environmental triggers usually are allergens. Most of are, in allergens most important cause is house dust might. It can be due to stress, anxiety, obesity, drugs, infection. Infection are usually viral. It can be due to drugs like aspirin, NSIAD, or ace. The diagnosis of asthma is usually by pulmonary function test which shows the obstruction and the reversibility of the obstruction by inhaled short acting beta to agonist. If the reversibility is good then the patient is labeled as asthma. Treatment of asthma is for emergency patients or a routine patients. If a patient is unable to take proper breath, his heart rate is more than 120, he is having increased respiratory rate of 30 or having sinuses or unable to speak a single sentence then he is having a severe attack of asthma and should be rushed, patient should be rushed to the nearby health faculty for admission and treatment. Treatment for routine asthmatic is divided into certain steps. Steps 1 to 5. In the step 1, the patient is given short acting beta 2 agonist as and when required, with that the patient usually remain all right, the need for inhalation for beta 2 agonist should not be regular. Step 2 consist of inhaled corticosteroids in low doses, and the patient remain usually well controlled with that. In the step 3 of this, there is a either high dose of inhaled corticosteroids or combination of low dosed inhaled corticosteroids plus long acting beta 2 agonist. In step 4 if the patients is not controlled with the drugs in step 3 then, the patient is put on to step 4 and contain high dose inhaled corticosteroids plus long acting beta2 agonist. Most of the patients are controlled up to steep wise treatment 1 to 4. If the patient is not controlled given with that then the patient may need oral corticosteroids or anti iGE treatment.

For further queries or any follow up treatments you can contact me at my hospital.
Play video
Bronchial Asthma
Good mroning, I am Dr Ashok Rajput, a Pulmonologist, practising in Delhi. Today I will talk to you about very common disease, that is, Bronchial Asthma.

Asthma starts in early childhood and may persist in adult life. It is an episodic disease which is intermitted initially. Later, if left untreated, it become continuous and perennial. Whne one is exposed to dust, fumes, pollen and smoke then the inner lining of the airways swells and becomes inflammed and the lumen narrows. So it becomes difficult to breathe. So these patients get cough, wheezing, snoring and running nose.

The diagnosis of this condition is very easy. What you have to do?

You do Spirometry or a lung function study in which you blow into a computer and you get a graph. You repeat the test after giving bronchodilators, say 15-20 minutes. If you find an improvement in FEV1, one of the parameters, more than 12% you clinch a diagnosis of Asthma.
The treatment of Asthma is very simple these days. The main stay of treatment is inhaled corticosteroids which is given through the inhalers. There are many types of inhalers available with good drugs which act for 12 hours which you need to take only in morning or evening and your Asthma gets controlled. When I say controlled, that means you will no longer have cough, wheeze or sneeze. You can sleep undisturbed in the night and can perform all the activities. You can lead a normal life.What you require is small dose of this inhaler.

Thank you for listening to me.

If you want to contact us, you can come to our clinic or contact through Lybrate.
Having issues? Consult a doctor for medical advice