What should you know about asthma?

Types of Asthma

Childhood asthma

If asthma developed in the childhood period of life, then it is called childhood asthma. Such a disease occurs when a child becomes too sensitive to common allergens in the environment, according to scientists, this is more due to genetic causes. Such a child is recognized as atopic, which is a genetically determined state of hypersensitivity to environmental allergens.

Allergens are substances that the human body perceives as foreign, which causes an immune response. This reaction varies individually, quite often animal proteins, fungi, pollen, dust mites and even some types of dust become allergens. Airway cells are very sensitive to certain substances, which makes it possible to develop an asthmatic reaction if the child is exposed to a specific amount of allergen.

Adult asthma

This term is used if an asthmatic disease has developed in the adult period of life after reaching twenty years. This type of asthma affects women more often; it is less common compared to childhood asthma.

Adult asthma can be caused by some allergic materials or allergies. According to experts, approximately 50% of cases of adult asthma are associated with various allergies. However, a significant part of asthmatic cases of this kind are not caused by the action of allergens; they are known as non-allergic adult asthma, or endogenous bronchial asthma. Exposure to chemical particles or the chemical components of some plastic materials, metals, drugs or wood dust can also cause adult bronchial asthma.

Sports asthma

If you have shortness of breath, coughing, and difficulty breathing during or after exercise, you can say about the likelihood of the occurrence of so-called sports asthma. Obviously, the level of sports training is also a specific factor, however, if the level of physical fitness is still accompanied by coughing and shortness of breath, then you should think about sports asthma. As with other types of bronchial asthma in this case, the patient has certain difficulties with the access of air to the lungs due to inflammation of the respiratory tract, in particular, the bronchial tubes, and also due to excess sputum.

Some patients experience such symptoms only during exercise. Undoubtedly, the good news is that with adequate treatment, a patient with sports asthma should not stop playing sports. With proper and adequate management of asthma, the patient can maintain the desired level of physical activity. For example, Mark Spitz won nine gold medals in swimming at the 1972 Olympics, while he had sports asthma.

Approximately 80% of people with various types of bronchial asthma may have symptoms during exercise, however, as a rule, people with sports asthma do not have symptoms if they are not engaged in exercise.

Cough asthma

Asthma caused by coughing is one of the most difficult to diagnose, since the doctor must eliminate other possible causes of the disease, for example, chronic bronchitis, postnasal mucus due to hay fever or sinitis. In such cases, a cough develops independently without concomitant asthmatic symptoms. Coughing attacks can occur at any time of the day, at night such a cough leads to sleep disturbances.

Occupational asthma

The development of this type of asthma is caused by any allergens that are present in the patient’s workplace; Such allergens include chemical compounds, volatiles, gases, tobacco smoke, dust, perfumes and some other particles. Also, this type of asthma can be caused by viruses, mold, animal waste products, pollen, high humidity and temperature. Moreover, even stress can lead to asthma in the workplace. Occupational asthma, as a rule, tends to develop shortly after the patient begins to work in a new place, and disappears shortly after he leaves this work.

Nocturnal asthma

Nocturnal asthma develops between midnight and eight o’clock in the morning; it is caused by so-called house allergens, such as animal dust or dandruff, as well as the condition of the maxillary sinuses. With nocturnal asthma, there may be no symptoms in the afternoon, however, the patient may experience shortness of breath and lack of air while lying down and not notice them before he wakes up because of them in the middle of the night, as a rule, this happens between two and four hours in the morning.

Nocturnal asthma can manifest itself as a single peistup, and frequent episodes during the week; As a rule, nocturnal symptoms are quite common in those patients who have them during the day. Nevertheless, in the absence of daytime symptoms, the diagnosis of nocturnal asthma is difficult, leading to a late start of treatment. The reasons for the development of this type of bronchial asthma are still unexplored.

Steroid-Resistant Asthma

Despite the fact that the majority of patients with asthma respond quite well to treatment with regular inhalation of glucocorticoids, all of the patients have a steroid-resistant form of asthma. Inflammation of the airways and cation of the immune system play an important role in the development of chronic asthma. Current regulations and guidelines regarding asthma treatment focus on the use of anti-inflammatory therapy, in particular inhaled glucocorticoids. By lowering airway inflammation and immune activation, glucocorticoids can alleviate asthmatic symptoms. However, patients with steroid-resistant asthma have a higher level of inflammation and immune activation in the airways compared to patients with asthma that is susceptible to steroids.

Moreover, glucocorticoids do not lower eosinophilia (a high concentration of eosinophils in the blood) and the activation of T cells found in patients with steroid-resistant asthma. Such continuous immune activation is associated with a high level of interleukin-2, interleukin-4 and interleukin-5 molecules in the airways of patients.


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