The answer is: people of all ages. 180,000 people across the world die from asthma each year. The United States records about 70 deaths a week, most of them preventable. In the United Kingdom, 20 persons die each week. The question hence arises: why were these deathsnot prevented?
A study by the British Thoracic Association of 90 asthma deaths found that 74% occurred because patients underestimated the severity of the disease. In 36 instances, the patients saw a health care provider . . .
There is one further complication when dealing with the elderly. It may be that they feel they are wasting a health care provider’s (HCP) time; or they may feel that the situation is not serious enough to warrant a visit to their HCP; or they seek advice from friends to the extent that they are known to not only take medication that has been prescribed for themselves but also . . . Read More
Polypharmacy is generally defined as the use of at least five prescription medications. Rarely are patients, particularly the elderly (from 62 to 85 years), asked about the over-the-counter (OTC) medications that they use. Yet, OTC medications are medications that are considered safe and effective for use by the general public and hence . . . Read More
Does what you do for a living increase your risk of asthma? About 11 million American workers may have occupational asthma. Recent studies have further highlighted the connection between occupation and the risk of asthma. Over 360 substances have been linked to the development of asthma with anywhere from 50% to 90% of cases due to . . . Read More
Parents and children listed other symptoms that herald an asthma exacerbation. They listed the early markers of an exacerbation as headache, stomach ache, fatigue, dizziness, throat pain, throat tightening, and malaise. When asked how they knew their children were having an asthma exacerbation, they provided the following observations: Read More
Medical terminology has held both a degree of fascination and intimidation for patients who are unfamiliar with it. Between health care professionals, the use of terminology is deliberate and easily understood. It aids communication and becomes a shorthand for conveying a volume of information in a few words. However, while it is helpful for health care professionals, one needs to carefully examine and even question . . . Read More
Asthma has been defined as a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterized by airway obstruction which is at least partially reversible with or without medication, and increased bronchial responsiveness to a variety of stimuli.1 Today, the primary emphasis in treatment is on the reduction of inflammation. Inflammation is the body's response to injury or . . . Read More
For asthmatic children with allergies to food the statement that what you eat affects breathing is simple to understand. Allergic reactions to food that cause respiratory symptoms are also known in occupational asthma. The allergic response can affect not only the skin and gastrointestinal tract but can be a trigger for asthma resulting in symptoms such . . . Read More
Complementary and Alternative Medicine (“CAM”), also known as Integrative Medicine, is a diverse field covering a variety of treatments that are provided by practitioners with varying degrees of training. CAM can be classified into five areas that include:
1) alternative medical systems
2) biologic-based therapies
3) energy therapies . . .
The acronym FACE is a quick and easy way to remember that PCC involves the four factors that make PCC possible. Read More
F is for Focused. This requires that the HCP be focused on the patient, not on faculty, academia, research or on . . .
A study on patient preferences in primary care consultations showed that patients overwhelmingly agreed on the need for communication, partnership and health promotion. The level of agreement was extremely high, noticeably . . . Read More
In 2001, the Institute of Medicine defined Patient-centered care (PCC) as one that “establishes a partnership among practitioners, patients and their families (when appropriate) to ensure that decisions respect patients’ wants, needs, and preferences and solicit patients’ input on the education and support they need to make decisions and participate in their own care.” The NAEPP Expert Panel 3: *Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Asthma . . . Read More
For a long time, research on asthma has been focussed on the disease and its pathophysiology, the medications, and ways in which patients can be made more compliant. In comparison, little has been done to gather information on how patients perceive the disease and its treatment. As more and more attention is paid to helping patients to manage and control the disease, it becomes necessary to understand how patients view the disease… Read More
The years during which medications for pregnant women were described as A, B, C, D and X are gone. No longer can anyone rely on the old system which categorized medications alphabetically with A considered safe, B of acceptable risk, and X defined the teratogenic. The A, B, C system was based on what was… Read More
It is particularly dispiriting that despite mounting evidence as to the deleterious effects of maternal tobacco smoking both pre- and post-natal on the child, mothers continue to smoke. A 2011 publication analyzing data from 1965 to 2008, estimated that anywhere from 22 to 34 percent of American women of reproductive age smoke cigarettes. It is thus a major public health concern due to predictable adverse outcomes and neurodevelopmental deficits in offspring. Read More
Almost every health professional has been told by a patient that standard asthma treatment produces undesirable side effects, and that a better replacement exists in one or more forms of alternative medicine. Yoga is regarded as a form of mind-body practice and is the sixth most commonly form of complementary… Read More
Part I described the properties of Vitamins A, C, D and E and the research based conclusions as to in their use in the treatment of asthma. This installment reviews the other dietary nutrients. Read More
The average North American is exposed each day to food with many different nutrients, preservatives, toxins, colourings, flavouring agents, and numerous miscellaneous other additives. While many of these items are individually designated ‘GRAS’ (generally regarded as safe), no studies have… Read More
Over-the-counter medications are generally regarded as safe. And one of the most effective pain relievers most commonly recommended and used during pregnancy is acetaminophen. Acetaminophen or paracetamol (the generic name for Tylenol or Excedrin) has the fewest risks compared with aspirin or ibuprofen. However, this does not mean that… Read More
The goal of treatment in asthma is to attain control of the disease. This requires a team approach with the patient being an essential member of the team. Control of asthma is beneficial in that it improves the quality of life for the patient and reduces health care costs.
Controlling asthma is not easy for either patients or health care providers. From the patient’s perspective there are the environmental reduction and avoidance measures that are of primary importance. Then there are the medications, different… Read More