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Asthma is a chronic lung disease caused by inflammation and bronchospasm. The disorder manifests as recurrent cough, wheezing, shortness of breath, reduced expiratory flow, exercise intolerance.

Asthma affects 4-5% of children. The death rate from asthma has significantly increased in recent years. Symptoms usually begin in the first 5 years of life, and many children improve.

Risk factors for developing asthma include male gender, Hispanic or African race, crowding, poverty.

Poorer prognosis is associated with frequent and severe symptoms, frequent hospitalization, dependence on oral steroid medication, and having an unsupportive family.


Treatment of asthma is aimed at preventing and minimizing inflammation. Airway inflammation is caused by allergy, infection, and irritants. Inflamma tion causes increased mucus, swollen, thickened bronchioles, and bronchospasm.

Most children have only occasional symptoms; a few children are constantly symptomatic.

III. Prevention

Influenza can trigger asthma symptoms; therefore, asthmatic children should receive influenza vaccine annually.

Cigarette Smoke is a significant trigger of asthma, and nicotine nasal spray may help patients and parents stop smoking.

Allergens may trigger asthma. High-energy particulate arresting (HEPA) electronic air filters remove airborne asthma triggers. Regularly replacing the furnace filter and air conditioning filter or installing an electrostatic air filter is helpful. Seasonal allergic is often provoked by ragweed, grasses, and pollen. Perennial is often by provoked molds, goose down, feathers, dust, and cat and dog dander, and mold. Bedding made of down, feather, and wool should be replaced with washable bedding.

Microscopic dust mites may trigger asthma, and measures that reduce exposure include removal of carpet.

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