Asthma is a chronic disease that affects more than 26 million people in the U.S., including more than 6 million children. People with asthma may experience one or more of symptoms including coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and tightness in the chest — all caused by inflammation of the airways.
Some people may only experience asthma symptoms when their condition is triggered by allergies, air pollution, exercise, or illness, while other people live with persistent symptoms.
Because allergies are a common cause of asthma attacks, seeing an allergist to discuss your asthma symptoms may offer pathways to treat or manage your condition so that it doesn’t interfere with work, school, or other activities you enjoy.
How will an allergist test for asthma?
Because many people with asthma can experience a range of symptoms and may only experience them periodically, it can be a difficult condition to diagnose. Reviewing a patient’s history offers many helpful clues. Spirometry can also offer insight into a patient’s asthma.
Spirometry is a simple type of pulmonary function testing. This painless, 10-minute procedure measures the flow of air through the lungs and can help your doctor diagnose and manage asthma.
During a spirometry at Hudson Allergy, the patient stands, takes a deep breath and then blows as hard and fast as possible through a small cardboard tube. A connected computer interprets the breath into a graph that shows what is happening with the patient’s airways. For asthma patients that use a fast-acting inhaler, your doctor may ask you to use the medication and repeat the test.
If the spirometry suggests that the current respiratory symptoms are the result of asthma, then your allergist can begin to determine the role allergies may play in your condition, as well as recommend effective treatments such as immunotherapy.
If you’re ready to learn more about your asthma symptoms, make an appointment with the experienced team at Hudson Allergy today.