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Pulmonary Medicine

Asthma

Asthma is a chronic illness in which the airways become obstructed, making breathing difficult. The main symptoms include:

  • Swelling: The airway lining becomes inflamed and swells.
  • Bronchospasm: The smooth muscles around the airway tighten in response to external triggers.
  • Mucus: During an asthma attack, the body produces additional mucus. It creates mucus plugs that can’t be cleared by coughing.

Asthma can cause wheezing, shortness of breath and coughing in response to a variety of triggers.

Asthma can affect both children and adults. Those at high risk include:

  • Children 5 to 17 years of age
  • Residents of cities with poor air quality
  • Smokers or those exposed to second-hand smoke
  • People with allergies
  • People with a family history of allergies and asthma

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