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Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment and Management of Asthma - Medical Research Paper Example

2021-08-27 08:05:32
7 pages
1741 words
Categories: 
University/College: 
University of California, Santa Barbara
Type of paper: 
Research paper
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Asthma refers to the protracted disease belonging to the group of respiratory diseases known to characteristically block the airways found in the lungs (Lambrecht & Hammad, 2015). Ideally, asthma affects a myriad of individuals in the world over and as such, there is a need for an in-depth evaluation of the best ways by which to counteract some of its symptoms at large (Lambrecht & Hammad, 2015). While credible analytical perspective ascertains the lack of a cure for the disease, strategic application of certain prevention techniques assure relief and comfort to the afflicted. Management of the disease, therefore, plays a critical role especially when it comes to ensuring good health for the affected patients (Lambrecht & Hammad, 2015). The symptoms of the disease range from wheezing experienced during breathing to coughs. However, not all wheezing necessarily point to asthma. Immunologists, as well as reputable analytical perspectives, have endlessly performed considerable research concerning the best ways by which to manage the disease and so far, their findings have revealed substantial breakthroughs (Lambrecht & Hammad, 2015). Coupled with the current technological landscape, findings from prior studies can now offer leverage regarding the treatment of Asthma. Thus far, this article aims to analyze the underpinnings requisite to the management of Asthma critically.

Asthma occurs by inflaming the airways thereby obstructing airflow. It exists in three forms (Lambrecht & Hammad, 2015). For starters, most people normally come to the realization of their asthmatic nascence during and after exercises. Notably, this refers to exercise-induced asthma. Some people also contract the disease through agents like gases, smoke among other harmful fumes and this type of asthma identifies as occupational asthma (Tarlo & Lemiere, 2014). Otherwise, substantial research has also divulged information that points to the presence of childhood asthma which starts at an early age in children normally aged 5 and above (Lochte et al., 2016).

Causes of Asthma

Credible analytical research has in the recent past indicated that the causes of asthma result from a few specific agents ranging from cigarette smoke, the inhaling of toxic fumes to genetic inheritance of the disease (Lambrecht & Hammad, 2015). Some of these genetic factors include, but not limited to; atopy which is an acquired propensity to contract allergies, parents who have the disease, childhood respiratory infections, as well as contact with some allergen in infancy during the development of the immune system.

Furthermore, certain causes may also include allergens such as dust, mold, and pollen in the air (Calderon et al., 2015). Otherwise, cold air, as well as considerable transitions in the weather also triggers the disease from varied dimensions.

Symptoms of Asthma

Essentially, considerable studies have indicated that asthmatic symptoms differ from one person to the next (Ward et al., 2015). Put simply, these studies suggest that certain symptoms experienced by one person may not necessarily point to the conclusion that someone else showing similar symptoms also has it as underlying conditions vary from one individual to the next.

According to medical examiners, the most notable symptom in adults manifests in the form of wheezing which refers to the abrasive and or shrieking sound while breathing (Aaron et al., 2017). However, other signs may include tightness experienced in the chest region, a cough that lasts a long time known as chronic coughing, difficulty in breathing, as well as having trouble sleeping during the night due to the inherent prospects of wheezing and coughing.

Regardless, medical experts assert that children may also display similar signs as there adult counterparts. Notice of these signs in children plays a core role in ensuring the receipt of medication. Such signs may include; wheezing during exhalation, lethargy which manifests when a child suddenly halts playing, difficulty in breathing, sleeping problems, refraining from sports and or physical activities, and worse coughing.

Medical examiners, as well as considerable studies on the same, have constantly indicated that attention to the time frame during which the symptoms manifest plays a key role when it comes to diagnosis (Aaron et al., 2017). Such time frames may include: during specific seasons, after certain activities such as exercises, during early in the morning or late at night, as well as exposure to certain asthmatic triggers.

Diagnosis of Asthma

Respiratory diseases like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, as well as bronchiectasis require a proper diagnosis in a bid to aid in their early detection so that medication may commence immediately (Aaron et al., 2017). Notably, the most common types of effective diagnoses conducted by medical experts include an in-depth medical examination to lung tests using a spirometer. Also, most asthmatics have a history of becoming allergic so allergy testing also exists as one of the effective diagnoses carried out by doctors.

A doctor may strategically perform a physical examination of a patient in a bid to ascertain the presence of asthmatic symptoms in the patient such as having a running nose, as well as wheezing among many other relevant symptoms.

Alternatively, a doctor may similarly opt to assess the long-term medical history of a patient. Herein, the doctor and or medical examiner may decisively ask if one has a medical history of asthma, as well as allergy (Aaron et al., 2017). Nonetheless, questions pertinent to what triggers ones asthma also play a considerably important role in the diagnosis of the disease. Otherwise, the doctor may also ask about the underlying conditions prevalent in ones condition which may possibly worsen the manifestation of the disease. Such conditions include snoring (sleep apnea), infection in the sinus, the stress of the psychological order, as well as gastro-esophagus reflux.

Lung tests

Lung tests constitute a patient blowing hard into a spirometer (a device for measuring the air capacity of ones lungs) after which the documentation of considerable analysis of the patients inhalation, as well as expiration, follows (Woodruff et al., 2016). Essentially, the test entails how much one can possibly breathe in and out. It also encompasses how quickly one breathes out.

Notably, for the diagnosis involving lung function tests, certain terminologies play a key role (Woodruff et al., 2016). Such include FEV1 (Forced Expiration Volume) which explains the quantity of air one exhales during a forced exhalation and or breath. The total quantity of air exhaled may be measured during FEV1 or FEV2 (Woodruff et al., 2016). Otherwise, FVC or Forced volume Capacity refers to the total quantity of exhaled air during the forced expiration volume test (Woodruff et al., 2016). Ideally, a normal person registers FEV1 of above 80% and this suggests the lack of an issue with the lungs. An FEV1 of 80% defines minor issues; FEV1 of 60% but below 80% defines mild issues implying the presence of some limitation in breathing. Otherwise, FEV1 of 60% shows severity in the diagnosis and as such requires immediate attention. Accordingly, a diagnosis whereby the FEV measures above the threshold of 80% considerably implies good health in a patient (Woodruff et al., 2016). Any measurements below this threshold strikingly suggest the presence of a limitation in breathing which requires medical attention.

Treatment of Asthma

Asthmatics prefer long-term medication due to the underlying relief assured by these drugs to the possibility of not showing symptoms in a long time. Some of the long-term medication includes inhaled corticosteroids, leukotriene inhibitors, beta-acting agonists, as well as pharmacotherapy.

Inhaled corticosteroids exist as some of the most effective medicines for asthma (Wenzel et al., 2016). They aid in the reduction of inflammation of the airways (Wenzel et al., 2016). The supposed reduction in the inflammation greatly contributes to the prevention of the supposed chain reaction causing asthmatic symptoms to manifest. Consistent usage of these medicines also reduces respiratory hyperactivity, as well as the obstruction in the airways (Wenzel et al., 2016). Studies indicate low side effects to the long-term use of these medicines as compared to the oral corticosteroids (Wenzel et al., 2016). Certain side effects like dysphonia and candidiasis affecting the mouth and the pharynx may be regulated via the mouth rinsing, as well as the use of spacers. Nonetheless, cataracts and skin bruises exist as some of the imminent side effects directly retrieved from the usage of these medicines.

Leukotriene inhibitors also exist as medicines are administered through the mouth and play a core role in the reduction of the inflammation of the airways (Miligkos et al., 2015). Examples include Montelukast, zileuton, and zafirlukast.

Pharmacotherapy, on the other hand, entails the administration of inhalant drugs through dose inhalers. Spacers improve the administration process.

Beta-acting agonists equally play a critical role in the treatment of asthma. As such, they reduce airflow obstruction by opening respiratory airways (Wenzel et al., 2016). Normally, when added to corticosteroids, they supplement the regulation of asthma symptoms. Otherwise, medical experts advise against solitary usage of these drugs (Wenzel et al., 2016). As such, they function best when mixed with corticosteroids.

Theophylline, an equally indispensable medicine, is delivered through the mouth and executes functions similar to the aforementioned drugs.

Management of Asthma

The management of asthma plays a critical role in ensuring that asthmatics experience a considerably healthy and normal life (Zamjahn et al., 2018). Analytical perspectives indicate that patient education aids in the management of the disease among the afflicted. Notably, emergency management of acute asthma includes the aspects of subjecting patients to ICU in a bid to prevent and reduce incidences of morbidity, as well as mortality (Zamjahn et al., 2018). Issuance of bronchodilators in small doses through nebulizers also exists as some of the emergency management procedures delivered by respiratory therapists (RTs). Otherwise, RTs also aid in the management of follow-up programs by constantly counseling patients on the importance of managing medication (Zamjahn et al., 2018). RTs based in homes also offer home-based care to the patients by indulging in certain activities like readjusting the medical paraphernalia. Nonetheless, RTs deliver severely afflicted patients to the ICU and accordingly manages a myriad of substantial factors such as blood gases, as well as ventilation factors.

Conclusion

Summarily, asthma affects a great number of people in the world over. Therefore, there is a need for an in-depth evaluation of some of its causes; the diseases symptoms, treatment procedures, as well as the management schematics performed by the respiratory therapists in a bid to aid ensure remedying effects from diversified angles. Asthma has a lot of causes ranging from allergens, specific medications, genetics, as well as environmental factors. Some of the symptoms herein include wheezing, coughing, experiencing chest pains, as well as night awakenings. Otherwise, medical examiners have accordingly come up with specific diagnosis protocols and they involve assessment of medical history, physical examination, as well as conduction of lung function tests. Treatment of asthma entails the use of corticosteroids, leukotriene inhibitors, Beta-Agonists among others. Respiratory thera...

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