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Newsletter

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Asthma of Eosinophils (Eosinophilic Asthma): The Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

Eosinophilic asthma is considered a leading cause of severe asthma, affecting 50 to 60 percent of people with the severe form of the disease. In the population as a whole, eosinophilic asthma is rare, affecting only 5 percent of adults with asthma.

Table of Contents
Definition of Eosinophilic asthma: Eosinophilic asthma is like other forms of asthma in that people with the condition suffer from inflamed airways, blocked by fluid and mucus and experience spasms that make it difficult to breathe.
Unlike other kinds of asthma, however, eosinophilic asthma involves abnormally high levels of a particular type of white blood cell called eosinophils.  Eosinophils are part of the immune system and help the body fight off infection. However, high levels of eosinophils can cause inflammation in the airways, affecting the sinuses and nasal passages as well as the lower airways.
In general, as the level of eosinophils increases, inflammation and other symptoms of asthma become more severe. This form of asthma most often develops in people between the ages of 25 and 35. People with eosinophilic asthma usually do not suffer from allergies. This condition can be difficult to treat and may have a detrimental effect on an individual's quality of life.
The Causes: A specific cause for eosinophilic asthma has not been identified. While other forms of asthma are triggered by allergic responses to environmental factors, such as pollen or pet hair, eosinophilic asthma does not develop in this way. High levels of eosinophils can develop when the body is fighting off a parasitic infection, but scientists have not yet determined what causes these levels to spike in cases of eosinophilic asthma. 
Asthma can run in families, so researchers are exploring the possibility of a genetic connection. However, no direct genetic link has been found with eosinophilic asthma.
The symptoms of eosinophilic asthma include:
  • shortness of breath
  • wheezing
  • tightness in the chest
  • coughing
  • obstructed airflow
  • stuffy nose
  • nasal drainage
  • chronic sinus infections
Seek A Medical Practitioner For Help!
Prompt and consistent treatment of eosinophilic asthma is important, as inflammation of the airways can lead to permanent damage, such as a thickening of the airway walls or scarring of the lung tissue.
People with asthma are encouraged to see a doctor at least once a year to make sure their treatment plan is effective. Symptoms that require prompt medical attention include:
  • dizziness or feeling faint
  • wheezing while breathing
  • difficulty doing routine activities
A person should seek emergency care if any of these symptoms develop:
  • quick-acting medication provides no relief after 15 minutes
  • difficulty speaking or walking at a normal pace
  • lips or nails turning blue
  • taking more than 30 breaths a minute
  • breathing causes nostrils to flare and the throat and ribs to feel stretched

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