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A 24-year-old member asked:

What do i do if i have an asthma attack?

9 doctor answers22 doctors weighed in
Dr. HARRY OPSIMOS
Pediatric Pulmonology 22 years experience
Follow your plan: Hopefully, you have a written plan for those situations. You use your rescue medications (inhalers) and may also possibly need steroids for a few days. If your bronchodilators do not provide relief, you may need to call your doctor or 911.
Dr. Paul Carter
A Verified Doctoranswered
A US doctor answeredLearn more
Rescue inhaler.: Use your rescue inhaler. If symptoms are not relieved or return, see your doctor. If you have symptoms that require a rescue inhaler more than twice a week, your asthma is poorly controlled and you need an increase in controller meds like a corticosteroid inhaler.
Dr. Sue Ferranti
Internal Medicine 29 years experience
Plan ahead...: This is a question that you need to address with your doctor. The answer depends on the severity of your asthma both at baseline and during acute exacerbations. Some patient's are instructed to take extra medicine while others need to report to the er immediately. Please discuss this with your doctor so that you have an action plan in place before you have an acute episode. This can be life-saving.
Dr. Manav Singla
Allergy and Immunology 23 years experience
Call 911 if severe!: Any time your child has asthma symptoms, it is an attack. Some attacks end quickly. Others are serious. An attack is bad if: the child has trouble breathing, walking or talking, lips or fingernails turn blue or gray, or these symptoms get worse even after taking medication. If these things happen, call 911!
Dr. Sue Ferranti
Internal Medicine 29 years experience
Exacerbation...: An asthma "attack" is an acute exacerbation of asthma caused by bronchospasm and inflammation of the airways. These exacerbations are recurrent but patients are often completely normal between attacks. Symptoms during the episode include wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath. Patients may have low oxygen levels during the attack. Patients with these symptoms need immediate eval.
Dr. Gary Kohn
Pediatric Pulmonology 27 years experience
Depends: If you are a known asthmatic you should have an asthma action plan from your caregiver that outlines how you should approach an asthma attack. Typically it includes the use of a short acting beta agonist like albuterol and systemic steroids if severe enough.
Dr. Sue Ferranti
Internal Medicine 29 years experience
Rescue inhaler...: You should use your rescue inhaler as prescribed by your doctor. If you get no relief, you should go to the er right away, call 911 if necessary. Asthma attacks can be life-threatening so don't waste any time getting to the er.
Dr. Joseph Bouvier
Pediatrics 25 years experience
Use your meds: Use your rescue medicines (short acting bronchodialators like albuterol) for the asthma and if not helping, seek medical attention quickly.
Dr. Richard Williams
Pharmacy 18 years experience
Rescue inhaler: A rescue inhaler (ie albuterol) is probably the best choice. If attacks are frequent and/or severe, an "asthma action plan" should be developed between you and your physician. This will spell out exactly what steps are to be taken.

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A 42-year-old member asked:

How can you prevent the asthma attack?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Lokesh Guglani
Pediatric Pulmonology 21 years experience
Preventive therapy: The best strategy to prevent asthma attacks is to use an anti-inflammatory medicine on a daily basis as preventive therapy. It will help suppress airway inflammation (which is the root cause of asthma) & prevent symptoms worsening to the point where you have an asthma attack. There is a wide spectrum of asthma severity & you may need different strength of meds based on yr symptoms & pfts.
A 44-year-old member asked:

What to do if someones having an asthma attack?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Matthew Majzun
Pulmonary Critical Care 14 years experience
Consider 911: Asthma is a common disease, but it does kill over 3, 000 people in the us every year. Make sure they use their rescue inhaler medications, but if they continue to have trouble they may need emergency care. Better to be safe than sorry.
A 41-year-old member asked:

What are the after effects of asthma attack?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Richard Williams
Pharmacy 18 years experience
Not too much: Unlike copd, after an asthma attack, your lungs go back to the way they were before the attack. People who have chronic attacks and do not use a "controller" do run the risk of declining lung function due to chronic inflammation that is not alleviated.
A 39-year-old member asked:

How badly could an asthma attack be?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Matthew Majzun
Pulmonary Critical Care 14 years experience
Consider 911: Asthma is a common disease, but it does kill over 3, 000 people in the us every year. Make sure you always carry a rescue inhaler. See a physician to make sure your asthma is adequately controlled.
A 34-year-old member asked:

What can happen if you have an asthma attack?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. John Chiu
Allergy and Immunology 57 years experience
Mild to death: If the asthma attack is mild , you may get over it on your own. If it is severe, you may die from it. It is always a good idea to check with your family doctor who will be able to get a more accurate history and likely obtain a lung function test on you to assess the severity of your disease this in turn will determine the type of treatment required.

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