A Answers (13)
Asthma is a respiratory disease where the small vessels in the lungs are constricted, making breathing difficult and sometimes impossible.The cause of asthma is not known, but there is evidence that many factors, including both genetic and environmental factors, play a part. Like allergies, asthma tends to run in families.
From Good Kids, Bad Habits: The RealAge Guide to Raising Healthy Children by Jennifer Trachtenberg.
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Asthma is a long-term disease that is characterized by narrowing, inflammation, and hyper-responsiveness of the airways (the tubes that carry air into and out of your lungs). When the airways become inflamed, they become swollen and sensitive, meaning that they may react strongly when certain things are breathed in (such as cigarette smoke, dust, or pet dander). The muscles around the airways tighten in response to the inflammation, causing the airways to have less space in them. In addition, the airways have more mucus than normal because they are inflamed, and this too can narrow the airways.
Asthma is a chronic condition that causes the airways - or bronchi - to narrow, limiting the movement of air into the lungs. Someone with asthma can cough (often at night), wheeze, and have trouble breathing. Inhaled allergens or cigarette smoke can cause an attack, as can exercise or stress. An asthma attack ends when the bronchi relax naturally or when medications such as anti-inflammatory drugs and bronchodilators help to reduce swelling and widen the airways.
Asthma, one of the most common chronic diseases in the U.S., affects more than 20 million adults and children. It is the most prevalent chronic pediatric disease, affecting six million children -- almost 10 percent of the U.S. pediatric population.
A chronic inﬂammatory disease of the lower airways characterized by airﬂow obstruction, asthma is recurrent, reversible and typically reactive to speciﬁc triggers. Chronic inﬂammatory cell inﬁltration of the airways leads to airway hyper-responsiveness, respiratory symptoms and disease chronicity. Airway remodeling and ﬁbrosis may develop in severe cases.
Although environmental interactions can inﬂuence disease phenotype, genetic predisposition to atopy (an immunoglobulin E-mediated response to aeroallergens, particularly house-dust mite, animal dander, cockroach allergen and Alternaria) is a strong predictive factor for asthma development. Viral respiratory infections, such as respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and the more recently studied rhinovirus, also may play a role in asthma development and are common etiologies for acute asthma exacerbations.
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Asthma is an acute and chronic condition where small airways constrict and make breathing difficult. Wheezing is the most common symptom and sign of asthma, but also coughing is often a presenting symptom. Asthma is caused by allergies, infections, exercise and chronic lung disease. Excellent respiratory hygeine is crucial to keeping asthma at bay. Getting the correct diagnosis is key and avoiding insulting agents that cause the attacks is crucial.
Asthma is an allergic disorder characterized by spasms of the bronchi (the airway tubes), swelling of the mucous lining of the lungs, and excessive production of thick, viscous mucus. The major concern with asthma is that it can lead to respiratory failure - the inability to breathe.