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Treatments for asthma

Written By northidahodpc

Treatments for asthma

January 18, 2012

Asthma is a common condition where the patient experiences shortness of breath, usually quite suddenly.  The incidence of this disease seems to be increasing, and there are many triggers.  There are two major respiratory changes that occur in asthmatics… narrowing of the airways (bronchoconstriction) and respiratory congestion due to inflammation.  These can occur separately or in combination.                                                                                                                                                                                             Airway narrowing is reversed by inhaled dilating medications such as albuterol, which is used to treat sudden attacks.  Longer acting bronchodilators such as Serevent have a slower onset of action and should not be used for reversal of sudden attacks or be used by themselves to prevent asthma.  Inflammation, on the other hand, is quieted by cortisone based medication, also typically with the use of inhalers.  A different kind of anti-inflammatory medication known as leukotriene inhibitors (ie: Singulair) are also useful in this regard.  Frequently, the best treatment at preventing asthma is a combination of a long acting bronchodilator with a cortisone based anti-inflammatory (such as Advair), saving a short and quick acting medication like albuterol for sudden, breakthrough attacks…..Richard R Samuel, MD     Family Practice and Urgent Care   Hayden, ID  USA

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