Bronchial asthma is the same as asthma, it is a common condition caused by several factors such as
allergy, flu, medications, etc. Bronchial asthma can be irritating and difficult to manage.
However, there is nothing to panic for as this post will discuss the signs and symptoms to look out for, causes, risk factors, diagnosis, and treatments for bronchial cancer.
What are the signs and symptoms of Bronchial asthma
Most of the time, diagnosing Bronchial asthma can be as simple as observing the symptoms, if you
experience the following symptoms, it may be a sign of Bronchial asthma.
- You experience shortness of breath
- You experience your chest tightening
- You experience wheezing and excessive coughing.
Experiencing one or more of the symptoms above may be a sign that you are suffering from bronchial
Causes of Bronchial asthma
Bronchial asthma may be caused by several factors, such as:
- Cold, flu, and pneumonia infection
- Exposure to smoke and smoking
- Toxins and air pollutants
- Extreme changes in weather condition
- Acid reflux
- Inhaling Alcohol-based fragrance
- And lots more.
Main risk factors of Bronchial asthma
If you are under one or more of the following conditions, you have a high chance of developing Bronchial asthma.
1. You had a viral respiratory infection as a kid: If you have a respiratory infection problem as a
kid, you are likely to develop branchial as an adult
2. There is a historical occurrence in your family: if bronchial asthma is not uncommon in your
family, you are likely to be infected with it.
3. You have some allergies: if you have some allergies like hay fever, you are likely to develop
4. Exposure to certain elements: if you are usually exposed to elements such as dusts, sawdust,
and fumes. You are likely to develop bronchial asthma.
5. Smoking or exposure to smoke fumes: if you smoke or are usually around those who smokes,
you are likely to develop bronchial asthma
6. If you are obese: if you are obese, you are likely to develop bronchial asthma
7. Exposure to pollutants: If you are exposed to air pollutants, you are likely to develop bronchial asthma
Diagnosis of Bronchial asthma
As stated earlier, diagnosing asthma can be as simple as observing the symptoms, but in such cases that
you may need to visit a doctor, you should expect the following diagnostic procedure:
- The doctor may enquire about the symptoms you are experiencing
- They may ask how often the symptoms occur and when they do occur
- They may enquire about the activities that prompt those symptoms
- They may enquire of any special condition such as family history or the nature of your work environment
If the Doctor couldn’t arrive at a conclusion, they may suggest a test.
Note: Children cannot be tested as the available tests aren’t suitable for children, rather, they may be required to take an inhaler to see if the symptoms subside.
In case you are required to take a test, below are some of the tests you should expect.
Peak flow Test: This test requires that you blow into a device that measures how fast you breathe out, it is usually repeated over several weeks to see how the condition has improved.
Nitric Oxide Test: This test measures how inflammatory your lung is, it requires you to breathe into a machine that measures the amount of nitric oxide in your breath
Spirometry: This test measures both how fast you can breathe out and how much breath you can hold in, it also requires you to breathe into a machine designed for such purposes.
Methacholin Challenge: Methacholin is an asthma trigger, you may be given this test to determine if you have asthma, it works by narrowing your lung when inhaled, obstructing the passage of air, if you react to this, there are chances that you have developed bronchial asthma
Sputum eosinophils: Eosinophils are some type of white blood cell which develop when you have bronchial asthma and are present in the mixture of cough and mucus, you may be required to undergo this test to determine if you have asthma.
Test for Exercise and Cold-induced asthma: You may be required to undergo a series of an exercise, whereby the condition of your lung will be taken before and after. Afterward, you may be required to undergo an X-ray to see how the symptoms have improved or an allergy test to see if the symptom is triggered by an allergy.
Allergies are usually tested for by performing a skin or blood test, if an allergen is found, you may be given an allergy shot.
Next, let’s consider how to treat Bronchial Asthma.
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Treatment of Bronchial asthma
Asthma may be classified into mild intermittent, mild persistent, moderate persistent, and severe persistent.
- You may have mild intermittent asthma if you experience mild symptoms up to 2 days a week.
- You may have mild persistent asthma if you had symptoms for more than twice a week, but not more than once a day.
- You may have moderate persistent asthma if you experience symptoms for more than one night in a week
- You may experience severe persistent asthma if you experience symptoms throughout most days and persistently at nights.
If you discovered that you are experiencing symptoms anyway from severe persistent, it is recommended that you immediately visit a doctor, but it is better that you prevent the asthma from developing by tracking your breathing to see if the medications are effective, identifying your triggers, and avoiding them, and also making a refillable inhaler handy in case of a flare-up.
Asthma can be treated with long-term medications, short-term medications, and allergy medications.
Long term medications
These apply to keeping asthma permanently under control, they include:
- Combination inhalers: these are medications containing a long-acting beta-agonist, they include fluticasone salmeterol, budesonide formoterol, formoterol mometasone, and fluticasone furoate-vilanterol.
- Theophylline: This pill works by relaxing the muscle around the lung to increase air passage, it is
- not usually used and may require some regular blood test.
- Inhaled Corticosteroid: These include fluticasone propionate, budesonide, beclomethasone, fluticasone furoate, and mometasone
Short term medications
These medications are handy in case of emergency. They include oral and intravenous corticosteroids, short-acting beta-agonists, and anticholinergic agents.
Quick-relief inhalers are also useful in this case, although you shouldn’t need a quick-relief inhaler if your long-term medications are effective.
These are useful if your asthma is triggered by an allergy, they include Allergy shots that strengthened your immune system over-time to fight off allergies, they are taken routinely.
In conclusion, suffering from bronchial asthma can be tricky and challenging, therefore you should always endeavor to visit a professional doctor if you experienced one or more of its symptoms.