How Do I Know My Asthma Is Under Control?

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There are two ways as a doctor we measure whether a patient's asthma is under control. The first is based on the number of symptoms they're having, and the other would be the measurement of their airflow limitation. With regards to symptoms, we would want to know if patients are short of breath, if they're coughing or if they are needing to use their albuterol inhaler and how frequently.

In general we like to see people use their albuterol or rescue inhaler less than twice a week, we also want to see symptoms be present less than once a day. If your symptoms are present more than once a day or you're needing to use you albuterol inhaler more than twice a week, you probably need to increase the amount of maintenance medication you're taking.

In addition to the symptoms, we also look at the airflow limitaion there are two ways that this can be followed. The first would be to come in to the office and have a breathing test called sperometry/g performed. This can be performed at any [xx] office and in most internal medicine offices.

In addition to sperometry/g a lot of patients are given home peak flow meters which they can blow into and record their own air flow limitation at home. If you feel your asthma is out of control, or you are having frequent symptoms it's important for you to be in touch with your provider, it's also important that you carry around your albuteral rescue inhaler wherever you go.