How Serious Is Asthma
Tragically, three people die every day because of asthma attacks and research shows that two thirds of asthma deaths are preventable.
The reassuring fact is that most people with asthma who get the right treatment – and take it correctly – can manage their symptoms and get on with what they want to do in life.
Medical History And Physical Exam
Your doctor will ask about your risk factors for asthma and your . They may ask also about any known allergies. This includes how often symptoms occur, what seems to trigger your symptoms, when or where symptoms occur, and if your symptoms wake you up at night.
During the physical exam, your doctor may:
- Listen to your breathing and look for of asthma
- Look for allergic skin conditions, such as eczema
Signs Symptoms And Complications
How often signs and symptoms of asthma occur may depend on how severe, or intense, the asthma is and whether you are exposed to allergens. Some people have symptoms every day, while others have symptoms only a few days of the year. For some people, asthma may cause discomfort but does not interfere with daily activities. If you have more severe asthma, however, your asthma may limit what you are able to do.
When asthma is well controlled, a person shows few symptoms. When symptoms worsen, a person can have what is called an asthma attack, or an exacerbation. Over time, uncontrolled asthma can damage the airways in the lungs.
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How Do Your Airways Work When You Have Asthma
When you have asthma, your airways arent able to function as well as they should.
- Chest tightness
Asthma causes inflammation, or swelling, in the lungs. It can also cause squeezing, called bronchoconstriction , and extra sensitive or twitchy airways.
When something bothers your airways, you have trouble breathing. This is called an asthma attack or episode. It gets harder to breathe because the tiny muscles around your airways squeeze tightly and they have swelling inside.
Your airways will make more mucus inside your airways, which makes it even harder to breathe. These changes in your airways can cause coughing and wheezing.
There is no cure for asthma. But you can take steps to manage it. If you have asthma, its important to see an asthma specialist, like an allergist or pulmonologist, to come up with the right asthma treatment plan. Medicines and avoiding asthma triggers can help reduce swelling and relax tight muscles in your airways.
ASTHMA Care for Adults
What Causes An Asthma Attack
An asthma attack can happen when you are exposed to asthma triggers. Your asthma triggers can be very different from someone elses asthma triggers. Know your triggers and learn how to avoid them. Watch out for an attack when you cant avoid your triggers. Some of the most common triggers are tobacco smoke, dust mites, outdoor air pollution, cockroach allergen, pets, mold, smoke from burning wood or grass, and infections like flu.
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Researchers Now See ‘both The Forest And The Trees’ With 3d Imaging Method
- Oregon Health & Science University
- A new study implicates remodeling of nerves in the airways as a key contributor to heightened sensitivity and airway constriction in patients with asthma. The results provide new insight into a little-understood factor in the development of asthma, a condition that affects about 235 million people worldwide. The study is the first to demonstrate that inflammatory cells can alter nerve structure in the lungs to cause disease.
A new study implicates remodeling of nerves in the airways as a key contributor to heightened sensitivity and airway constriction in patients with asthma.
The study published today in the journal Science Translational Medicine.
The results provide new insight into a little-understood factor in the development of asthma, a condition that affects about 235 million people worldwide. The study is the first to demonstrate that inflammatory cells can alter nerve structure in the lungs to cause disease.
Airway nerves sense inhaled particles, such as pollen and smoke, in the environment and help regulate airway constriction. In asthma, these nerves become more sensitive, causing patients to develop symptoms of wheezing and cough. Although previous research had shown that two-thirds of patients with asthma have an overabundance of a type of immune cell, called eosinophils, the effects of eosinophils on airway nerves were not fully understood.
Having Asthma Could Double Your Risk Of A Heart Attack
Asthma symptoms may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, heart attack, and stroke.
What does asthma, an inflammatory disease of the lungs that causes breathing problems, have to do with your heart? According to new research, active asthma can double the risk of a cardiovascular event like a heart attack, stroke, or related condition, and taking daily medication for asthma can increase the risk of a cardiovascular event by 60 percent over 10 years.
An inhaler, it turns out, can both rescue and endanger.
Asthma and heart disease may at first seem to have little in common one affects your respiratory system and the other your cardiovascular system. But the two are among the top five most burdensome diseases in the United States, and two studies presented at the American Heart Associations Scientific Sessions 2014 this weekend examined the ties between them.
One study found that those with asthma who require daily controller medication are 60 percent more likely to have a cardiovascular event like a heart attack during a 10-year period. The other finding may be even more striking. Those with active asthma or asthma medication use, and those who sought treatment for asthma within the previous year, are twice as likely to have a heart attack than those without active asthma.
Asthma, like heart disease, affects millions. Approximately 25 million Americans suffer from asthma, according to
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Physical Effects Of Asthma
Having asthma can affect a person in many ways. Physical effects can range from the somewhat annoying all the way to the life-threatening . The frequency and seriousness of asthma symptoms depends on the overall severity of the asthma and how well it is controlled.
Whether your asthma causes mild or severe symptoms, its essential to have an asthma management plan in place. The asthma doctors at UI Health can help. Well take the time to understand your symptoms and gauge the severity of your asthma. Then well work with you to put together a plan that will address the physical effects asthma is having on your body.
What Does Asthma Feel Like
There are three major signs of asthma:
- Airway blockage. When you breathe as usual, the bands of muscle around your airways are relaxed, and air moves freely. But when you have asthma, the muscles tighten. Itâs harder for air to pass through.
- Inflammation. Asthma causes red, swollen bronchial tubes in your lungs. This inflammation can damage your lungs. Treating this is key to managing asthma in the long run.
- Airway irritability. People with asthma have sensitive airways that tend to overreact and narrow when they come into contact with even slight triggers.
These problems may cause symptoms such as:
- Coughing, especially at night or in the morning
- Wheezing, a whistling sound when you breathe
- Shortness of breath
- Trouble sleeping because of breathing problems
Not every person with asthma has the same symptoms in the same way. You may not have all of these symptoms, or you may have different symptoms at different times. Your symptoms may also vary from one asthma attack to the next, being mild during one and severe during another.
Some people with asthma may go for long periods without having any symptoms. Others might have problems every day. In addition, some people may have asthma only during exercise or with viral infections like colds.
When to see your doctor
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Can You Prevent Asthma
You need to know hoGw to prevent or minimize future asthma attacks.
- If your asthma attacks are triggered by an allergic reaction, avoid your triggers as much as possible.
- Keep taking your asthma medicines after you are discharged. This is extremely important. Although the symptoms of an acute asthma attack go away after appropriate treatment, asthma itself never goes away.
Homeostasis And Its Relation To Asthma
What is homeostasis? Like most medical terms, theres a dictionary definition, but thats not always very helpful in understanding what a concept actually looks like and how it operates in the body. Biology dictionaries define homeostasis as the tendency of an organism or a cell to regulate its internal conditions, usually by a system of feedback controls, so as to stabilize health and functioning, regardless of the outside changing conditions. In terms of asthma, homeostasis refers to your bodys respiratory system functioning correctly without increases in inflammation or other parts of the pathophysiology of asthma negatively impacting you. If that definition seems overly complicated and contrived, dont worry, we will be discussing what it means and how it relates to the body thoroughly.
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What Is An Asthma Trigger
A trigger is anything that irritates your airways. Asthma is caused by two types of triggers.
- Allergic trigger: cause allergic reactions. Allergic triggers include things like dust mites, pollens, moulds, pet dander,
- Non-allergic trigger: are usually irritants. Non-allergic triggers include things like smoke, cold air, certain air pollutants, intense emotions
Learn more about different types of asthma triggers and how to manage them.
How Asthma Is Treated
While there is no cure for asthma, there are a number of treatments that can help control the condition.
Treatment is based on two important goals, which are:
- relieving symptoms
- preventing future symptoms and attacks
For most people, this will involve the occasional or, more commonly, daily use of medications, usually taken using an inhaler. However, identifying and avoiding possible triggers is also important.
You should have a personal asthma action plan agreed with your doctor or nurse that includes information about the medicines you need to take, how to recognise when your symptoms are getting worse, and what steps to take when they do so.
These symptoms are often worse at night and early in the morning, particularly if the condition is not well controlled. They may also develop or become worse in response to a certain trigger, such as exercise or exposure to an allergen.
Read our page on the causes of asthma for more information about potential triggers.
Speak to your GP if you think you or your child may have asthma. You should also talk to your doctor or asthma nurse if you have been diagnosed with asthma and you are finding it difficult to control the symptoms.
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What Is An Asthma Attack
An asthma attack is an exacerbation of asthma symptoms, during which a patients inflamed bronchial tubes prevent them from moving air in and out of their lungs. This episode may also be referred to as an asthma flareup. Regardless of what you call it, the symptoms are the same. Asthma attacks sometimes go on for several minutes at a time. If you have a more serious case of asthma or youve been consistently exposed to an asthma trigger, then the attack can continue for hours. At worst, some attacks can endure for days.
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You may have had asthma since childhood. Symptoms typically manifest in children five or younger. Sometimes laughing or crying can lead to an asthma attack in children, while other times its playing, excessive running, cold air and other weather shifts, scents such as perfume or smoke, and allergens such as pollen, dust mites or pet dander. Even being sick with a cold can cause asthma attacks.
In other instances, your job could trigger your feelings of breathlessness. This is known as occupational asthma, in which asthma attacks occur from breathing in dust, gases, fumes or other irritants. Allergic asthma can be exacerbated by said allergen, be that pollen or pet dander.
Side Effects Of Suffering From Asthma
Asthma is one of the most common health complications worldwide. In the United States alone, asthma affects over twenty-five million individuals, while in Canada the figure is roughly four million. Asthma is a chronic respiratory disease that causes inflammation of the airways, constricting the passages of the lungs. Asthma can make it more difficult for affected individuals to breathe, particularly when they physically exert themselves, and lead to a host of complications if left untreated. While difficulty breathing is the most common symptom of asthma affected individuals will experience, there is a host of other unfortunate effects from this respiratory illness they can encounter as well.
Get to know the full side effects of asthma now.
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What Are The Symptoms
Asthma can be different for everyone. Asthma symptoms can also vary over time, with few or no symptoms when asthma is well controlled. The common signs and symptoms of poorly controlled asthma include:
- Shortness of breath
- Trouble sleeping because of breathing difficulty
- Being unable to take part in physical activities without breathing difficulty
These symptoms can occur slowly over hours or days, or they can come on as sudden, recurring attacks after which the symptoms can persist for some time before disappearing. If left untreated, asthma can cause permanent structural changes in your airways called airway remodelling, which is why it is important to get your asthma under control and keep treating it over the long term.
How Do My Airways React To Triggers
If you have asthma you have sensitive airways that are inflamed and ready to react when they come into contact with something they dont like.
If you come into contact with one of your asthma triggers it causes your airways to react in three ways:
These reactions in the airways make it difficult to breathe and lead to asthma symptoms, such as chest tightness, wheezing, or coughing. It can also lead to an asthma attack.
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What Body System Does Asthma Affect
Sensory neurons in the vagal ganglia moderate respiratory responses such as coughing, and earlier studies have shown that the nervous system modulates asthma symptoms. This allergy causes asthma-like symptoms: airway hyperreactivity and constriction of the airways.
Also, can asthma cause other health problems? In rare cases, asthma can lead to a number of serious respiratory complications, including: pneumonia a collapse of part or all of the lung. respiratory failure, where the levels of oxygen in the blood become dangerously low, or the levels of carbon dioxide become dangerously high.
Keeping this in view, how Does asthma affect the respiratory system and circulatory system?
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways. The disease manifests as recurrent attacks of wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath. During an asthma attack, the muscles surrounding the airways contract, limiting the amount of air supply to the lungs.
Does asthma affect the brain?
Asthma primarily affects the lungs, but can impact brain function through direct and indirect mechanisms. Some studies have suggested that asthma negatively impacts cognition, while others have failed to identify asthma-related cognitive compromise.
Study Reveals Nervous System’s Role In Asthma Attacks
Asthma is a debilitating condition that kills 250,000 people around the world each year. People with asthma have hyperreactive airways and thickened lung walls obstructed with mucus. During an asthma attack, which could be fatal, airways constrict even further in the presence of a trigger, such as pollen, dust mites or a viral infection. Current asthma therapies treat asthma attacks as immune responses and focus on immune system suppression. However, a study by Dimitri Trankner of Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Virginia and his colleagues, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, shows that sensory neurons control bronchial hyperactivity.
Scientists know the immune system plays an important role in asthma. However, treatments that suppress the immune response and relieve inflammation do not control asthma symptoms completely. This indicates that asthma involves an additional mechanism.
Trankner and his team thought this mechanism might be nervous system activity. Sensory neurons in the vagal ganglia moderate respiratory responses such as coughing, and earlier studies have shown that the nervous system modulates asthma symptoms.
To test their hypothesis, the researchers genetically engineered mice with different groups of inactive neurons. They gave the mice an allergy to ovalbumin, egg white protein. This allergy causes asthma-like symptoms: airway hyperreactivity and constriction of the airways.
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Reducing The Burden Of Asthma
Asthma cannot be cured, but good management with inhaled medications can control the disease and enable people with asthma to enjoy a normal, active life.
There are two main types of inhaler:
- bronchodilators , that open the air passages and relieve symptoms and
- steroids , that reduce inflammation in the air passages. This improves asthma symptoms and reduces the risk of severe asthma attacks and death.
People with asthma may need to use their inhaler every day. Their treatment will depend on the frequency of symptoms and the different types of inhalers available.
It can be difficult to coordinate breathing using an inhaler especially for children and during emergency situations. Using a spacer device makes it easier to use an aerosol inhaler and helps the medicine to reach the lungs more effectively. A spacer is a plastic container with a mouthpiece or mask at one end, and a hole for the inhaler in the other. A homemade spacer, made from a 500-ml plastic bottle, can be as effective as a commercially-manufactured inhaler.
Access to inhalers is a problem in many countries. In 2019, only half of people with asthma had access to a bronchodilator and less than one in five had access to a steroid inhaler in public primary health-care facilities in low-income countries .