Living with asthma

Written by: Dr. Ernest Güell i Figueras
Edited by: Top Doctors®

Asthma is a multifactorial disease, that is, there is usually no single cause that causes it, but it is the sum of different factors that ends up causing bronchospasm. These factors can be immunological (allergic), irritative (tobacco) or infectious (repetitive bronchitis). If any of them falls on a genetically predisposed ground, it will cause an inflammation of the bronchial mucosa that will end up causing the contraction of the smooth bronchial muscles (bronchospasm). This is what we commonly know as ASTHMA.

The genetic component does not influence patients. That is, genetically inherited predisposition to suffer the disease, but not the disease itself. The fact that the disease appears or not depends on the rest of the factors and not on genetic reasons.


Recommended treatment

The treatment that is advised to people suffering from asthma goes through three different facets. First, patients should avoid as much as possible the causal allergen (pollen, dust, etc.) in order to minimize the allergenic load to which the patient is subjected. Secondly, it is important to increase tolerance to the allergen by means of specific immunotherapy in all those patients in whom it is indicated. Finally, you can administer a pharmacological treatment by inhaled anti-inflammatories and / or bronchodilators. In the most severe cases it may be necessary to resort to the use of corticosteroids. This type of drug treatment can be continued or only on demand depending on the intensity and frequency of the bronchospasm crisis.

Talking about a definitive cure is complicated, since it depends on what is meant by healing. An asthmatic will be a lifetime, but with the right treatment can make a normal life, even play sports. That is, he is born asthmatic, he dies asthmatic but he can live without asthma. When you do not have symptoms, you can not say that you are "cured" but it is true that you can have a normal life, without the restriction of asthma.. Even so, it is possible that once or twice a year you will need rescue medication , especially in situations of risk.


Importance of prevention

As always in medicine, prevention is essential to avoid the disease. In the case of asthma, it is particularly important, especially to prevent it from progressing to obstructive bronchitis , with the consequent complications. Hence the importance of specific immunotherapy (vaccines) in the treatment and prevention of allergies .

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Dr. Ernest Güell i Figueras
Allergy & Immunology

With over 30 years of experience is an expert in allergies and belongs to several scientific societies, in which he has held positions of responsibility. He specializes in pulmonology and Alergologia. Currently he is the Director of the Centre Medic Range Barcelona.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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