Diagnosing Adult Onset Asthma

Adult onset asthma is a chronic respiratory disease that is caused by an overreaction of the immune system to certain allergens. The airways of the lungs swell and interrupt normal breathing.

Whether it is caused by genetics or environment, this condition in the later years can be troublesome.

The symptoms of adult onset asthma include wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath. But these symptoms must start after the age of twenty. Otherwise they are part of childhood asthma.

Your Doctor Will Begin The Examination By Asking Questions

Diagnosing this disease can be difficult to do and your doctor may ask a variety of questions and perform tests to determine if you have this affliction. An asthma test is necessary because some of the symptoms can mimic other health problems. Identical symptoms can appear with bronchitis and pneumonia.

You doctor’s questions will be determine where and when symptoms appear.

Learn About Your Triggers

Exposure to certain substances will exacerbate an attack. Do you only show symptoms after being in a certain area or around some pets? Are there are a number of allergens that can bring on an asthma attack.

A Lung Function Test Can Find Out More

If your answers to the questions indicate a propensity for this breathing difficulty, your doctor will order other tests to provide a clear diagnosis of the condition. These are known as lung function tests. The results will reveal the condition and what category of intensity you fall into.

The first exam to be performed is the use of a bronchodilator. During this test, an asthma medication such as albuterol will be administered. If you are able to breath, then this medication is able to relieve the symptoms. Since there is an increase in lung function, it is highly suspect that asthma is the culprit.

A Spirometry Test Might Be Ordered

If it is necessary, your doctor may prescribe a spirometer. This will measure the amount of air you can expel after taking a deep breath and how quickly you can expel it. A peak flow test shows how hard you are able to breathe out. How you respond will give information on how to treat you.

Asthma Is Classified Into Four Groups

Based on your signs and symptoms, your asthma can be put in one of four categories: intermittent, mild persistence, moderate persistence, or severe difficulty.

  • Intermittent - episodes occurring only one or twice a month.
  • Mild persistence is noted in patients who have symptoms more than twice a week but never more often than once each day.
  • Moderate persistence are those who have breathing difficulty every day and often once at night.
  • Severe difficulty is classified as having symptoms on and off throughout the day with frequent bouts during the night.

With the right tests and procedures, your doctor can determine if you have adult onset asthma. While this disease may seem worrisome, it is treatable with a management plan and you can have a healthy lifestyle.

More Information
On The Safest Asthma Treatments

A Guide To Adult Onset Asthma: It's Not Just For The Young

Common Triggers Of Adult Onset Asthma

Diagnosing Adult Onset Asthma

Treating Adult Onset Asthma: A Step By Step Treatment Approach

Adult Onset Asthma: Is Self-Monitoring Beneficial?

Most people find fewer problems with breathing problems when they find an asthma management plan that really works. Read The SAFE Asthma Treatment Guide and discover the four steps to controlling asthma.  With a little help from your doctor and the right plan of action, you can control your wheezing and coughing so that you can breathe easier.

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