What is asthma?

Asthma is a condition where the small airways in the lungs become narrow and inflamed, with increased mucous production. This leads to symptoms of coughing, wheezing and difficulty breathing.

How do you diagnose asthma?

For older children, asthma is diagnosed using special breathing tests. These may include spirometry (which we perform in our office), Pulmonary Function Testing (PFTs), and methacholine challenge.

Although younger children cannot reliably perform these tests, they can still have asthma. The diagnosis of asthma in younger children rely on a thorough review of symptoms and their response to typical asthma medications.

How do you manage asthma?

  1. Avoid any known triggers, such as allergens

  2. Avoid cigarette smoke

  3. Take your asthma medications as prescribed

  4. Make sure your inhaler technique is correct (see below), and use an aerochamber if it has been prescribed

  5. If your asthma is not well controlled, make an appointment with your physician

  6. If you are having an asthma emergency, call 911 or go to the hospital immediately

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Disclaimer: This website is intended for informational purposes only. It is not meant to provide medical advice and should not be treated as such. For personal medical questions related to allergies, please speak directly with your physician. If you require emergency medical attention, please go to your nearest emergency room or call 911.

©2018 by Dr. Willa Liao, Kingston Pediatric Allergy