• Exposure to airborne irritants - perfume, tobacco smoke (first and second hand)
• Infections (colds and viruses) in both the nasal and sinus passageways
• Shortness of breath
• Difficulty breathing
• Constantly feeling tired
A carefully detailed medical history and physical examination that will be confirmed with allergy testing and lung testing.
Allergy testing begins with the “prick method” which is the application of a few sterile plastic prongs, administered on top of the skin, usually both forearms, with absolutely no bleeding, testing up to 50 different allergens, with the results in 20 minutes.
Lung testing will be done by blowing/breathing into a computer otherwise called PFT or pulmonary function test, which can then easily differentiate asthma from emphysema and other airway problems.
This begins with avoidance of the “triggers” If that is not possible or satisfactory, then “pharmacotherapy” or the use of drugs and medications will be started. If symptoms persist,or the response is sub-optimal, then and only then, will a course of desensitization to the causative allergens be begun. Becoming less allergic means less and fewer asthma exacerbations.
Allergy shots or (Immuno Therapy)
This is the administration of the offending allergen, injected subcutaneously in order to desensitize, or make the patient immune to that allergen.
SLIT, (Sub Lingual Immuno Therapy)
These are allergy drops administered under the tongue by the patient, at home. Although somewhat less effective than standard allergy shots, this a wonderful alternative for patients who are either “afraid” of needles or cannot commit to the time involved in going for “shots”.
A drug, administered intra-muscularly, anywhere from 1 injection once a month to 3 injections every 2 weeks, differs from standard allergy desensitization in that it makes the patient not less allergic, but rather un-allergic.
DID YOU KNOW?
of childhood asthma is caused by allergies
of adult asthma is caused by allergies
Children with nasal allergies or eczema, who if desensitized, are much less likely to develop asthma
Although an exact cause is unknown, many factors have been elucidated as triggers, such as genetic, environmental and occupational. Other precipitating factors besides untreated nasal and sinus conditions are recurrent ear infections (otitis) and “heartburn” otherwise called reflux or GERD (gastro-esophageal reflux disease).