Doctor insights on:
Will Epipen Help With Asthma Attack
Since epipen (epinephrine) can temporary relax the air way, can epipen (epinephrine) used for asthma attack in emergency situations when no asthma medication available?
Depends: Epi pens are used in people who experience severe allergic reactions. The source of the allergy is not really important. If the asthma attack is the direct result of the allergic reaction it may be beneficial. However, "epi" is a non-specific "agonist" whereas your rescue inhaler is specific for the receptors in your lungs and would probably work better with fewer side effects. Read more
Different use: Epi pens are used in people with severe, lifethreatening allergic reactions. Epinephrine is also a non-specific drug in that it stimulates different areas of the body so that side effects are very common anad sometimes dangerous. The rescue inhalers like albuterol are specific for the "receptors" in the lungs and so have little side effects outside that area. Read more
Yes: Epinephrine is old school - that's the way asthma was treated 30 years ago when access to nebulized bronchodilators like albuterol was limited. Another thing you can do in a severe asthma attack while waiting for help to arrive is to take an additional 2 to 4 puffs of your rescue inhaler. Either of these emergency actions will buy time but you need to get to the er or your doctor's office now! Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Prevention first: The best way to treat an asthma attack is "before it happens". This means that having an action plan and medications to control asthma is very important. This way severe attacks are usually avoided. If an attack comes on suddenly, relax, use of albuterol (quick relief) and immediate treatment in the er with oxygen can usually reverse an attack. An asthma specialist can develop a plan for you. Read more
Take your meds: Asthma is a disease of chronic airway inflammation. If you take inhaled "controller medications", take them faithfully as prescribed. Keeping your asthma under good baseline control can lessen attacks frequency and severity. Also if you have triggers - cats, smoking, mold, etc - avoid them as much as possible. And if you smoke, quit! Read more
Different things: Some people experience asthma as breathlessness or feeling starved for air, others chest tightness or chest pain, and still others hear or feel the wheezing in their chest. A few people only have cough, although they are the minority. When severe, there is usually little doubt about the diagnosis, but milder forms can sometimes be difficult to sort out. Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Asthma attack: Asthma is a lung disorder -the lungs become inflamed and the airways become narrow from the inflammation. Symptoms include coughing at night, where it makes sleeping uncomfortable; a whistling sound in your chest (wheezing); chest tightness; and/or shortness of breath - where it feels like you can't catch your breath. Http://www. Nhlbi. Nih. Gov/health/health-topics/topics/asthma/ Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Hard to answer: Asthma attacks include coughing, tightness in the chest and difficult breathing. However, other conditions can also cause these symptoms. The best way is to be checked by a physician. A good history of your attacks and a simple spirometry test can rule out or confirm asthma. Get checked. Good luck. Read more
Not necessarily: Though this is a possibility, it not not very common. Today's controller and rescue inhalers- when used properly- have greatly reduced fatalities. Read more
Hard To Say: It is important that you get help from a medical professional. Asthma flare-ups like your can occur when pollen levels change, associated with an infection, or due to stress. Sometimes non-allergic environmental changes like a rise in the level of air pollution or indoor carbon monoxide levels can cause this. Read more
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