Thursday, December 15, 2011

Asthma... will she outgrow it?

In follow-up to my previous post, I'd like to respond to Audrey's comment:

Hello! My daughter was diagnosed with a respiratory issue and then later "asthma" around 2 years old. Since we switched all our household products to chemical free ones it has definitely helped. However, whenever she starts to get the sniffles, I whip out the nebulizer and put her right on xolpenex or pulmacort (depending). I stopped using it completely for 8 weeks and she was totally fine!! It felt like I took the training wheels off my bike, but as cold season is upon us I find myself in the nervous nelly seat not wanting to wait and end up back in the ER. If I notice her not being as dependent on the machine should I keep her off it and see what happens or should I just continue with it until we are certain she is passed the stage. Question 2! I was told my husband out grew this toddler asthma and I am curious when kids typically outgrow it?

Great question! The scenario you describe above is very common. Children in this age group often get wheezing with colds or as a reaction to environmental triggers. Often a child will be diagnosed with “reactive airways disease” first and once a pattern becomes more evident, a doctor or nurse will then formally diagnose “asthma”. It is hard to say what you should do because all reactive airways disease and asthma care needs to be individualized to a given person’s triggers, symptoms and severity.

Asthma takes a toll on children and families. It can interfere with a child's ability to do everyday things, like sleeping, playing and going to school. And when a sick child can't go to school or daycare, a parent can't go to work. Asthma is an inflammatory disease that affects the lungs and airways. It can be triggered by allergens, cold air, respiratory infections, exercise, air pollution, airborne irritants or tobacco smoke.

Asthma and allergies are separate, but related conditions. About 80 percent of children with asthma have allergies. Patterns of allergies and asthma have been found in families; however, the specific genetic factors are not yet fully understood. Often people who have allergies and asthma will also have atopic dermatitis (eczema).

Research has not yet shown that standard treatments for asthma and wheeze symptoms are as effective in very young children as they are in older patients. We are testing the effectiveness of 2 commonly used treatments to help us better understand preschool aged patients so we can give them the best care possible.

For more information on asthma research studies, please contact the Asthma Clinical Research Center. This center is headed by Dr. Wanda Phipatanakul. Wanda’s current research projects are investigating the environmental and non-environmental factors that contribute to asthma and the progression of the disease. The research looks at the environments where children with asthma spend most of their time: home and school, as well as the effectiveness of current asthma treatments in hopes of improving the care of asthmatics.

For more information on how you can participate, please email us at or call 857-218-5336.

Disclaimer: The information on this website is for educational purposes only. Any information provided should not be used to replace the advice of your health care provider