Medications

Vitamin D supplements do not reduce asthma exacerbations overall

Vitamin D supplementation does not reduce the risk for asthma exacerbation in children overall, but does reduce the risk in those with low serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25[OH]D) concentrations, according to a review recently ...

Inflammatory disorders

Obesity-related gut damage may worsen asthma symptoms

Changes in gut function caused by weight gain are associated with an increase in asthma severity, according to research to be presented at the Society for Endocrinology annual conference in Harrogate.

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

New study identifies sexual activity as asthma trigger

When people with asthma wonder what forms of exercise might cause an asthma flare, they may not take sexual relations into account. A new study being presented at this year's American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Parent's mental health can affect kids' asthma care

When a parent is depressed, their child's asthma care may suffer. Now, research suggests that getting a child's asthma under control may include assessing a parents' mental health.

Pediatrics

Tool helps ID young children at high risk for asthma

The CHILDhood Asthma Risk Tool (CHART) can identify children at high risk for asthma at as early as 3 years of age, according to a study published online Oct. 6 in JAMA Network Open.

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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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