Asthma

Ozone air pollution could harm women's fertility

Many urban and suburban areas have high levels of ground-level ozone, an air pollutant that can adversely affect lung and heart health. New research in mice suggests breathing high levels of ozone could also affect women's ...

Mar 30, 2015
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Study sheds new light on asthma, COPD

In diseases such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the body produces too much mucus, making breathing difficult. New research from Washington University School of Medicine in St. ...

Mar 18, 2015
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Asthma (from the Greek άσθμα, ásthma, "panting") is the common chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterized by variable and recurring symptoms, reversible airflow obstruction, and bronchospasm. Symptoms include wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath. Asthma is clinically classified according to the frequency of symptoms, forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), and peak expiratory flow rate. Asthma may also be classified as atopic (extrinsic) or non-atopic (intrinsic).

It is thought to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Treatment of acute symptoms is usually with an inhaled short-acting beta-2 agonist (such as salbutamol). Symptoms can be prevented by avoiding triggers, such as allergens and irritants, and by inhaling corticosteroids. Leukotriene antagonists are less effective than corticosteroids and thus less preferred.

Its diagnosis is usually made based on the pattern of symptoms and/or response to therapy over time. The prevalence of asthma has increased significantly since the 1970s. As of 2010, 300 million people were affected worldwide. In 2009 asthma caused 250,000 deaths globally. Despite this, with proper control of asthma with step down therapy, prognosis is generally good.

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