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What Is Asthma?

Asthma refers to a medical condition where the airways become narrowed and swollen making it difficult to breathe. Asthma can trigger chronic coughing due to the production of extra mucous. Asthma cannot be cured but certain measures can help manage the symptoms. Get in touch with us to book an appointment with some of the best specialists for effective asthma treatment in Kolkata.

What Are The Types Of Asthma?

Asthma can be divided into the following types depending on the cause and severity of the symptoms - 

  • Intermittent
  • Persistent
  • Allergic Asthma
  • Non-allergic Asthma
  • Adult-onset Asthma
  • Pediatric Asthma
  • Exercise-induced asthma
  • Occupational asthma
  • Asthma-COPD overlap syndrome (ACOS)

What Are The Symptoms Associated With Asthma?

Symptoms of asthma vary from one individual to another depending on their medical health, age, type and the extent of the condition. One of the most common symptoms of asthma is a squealing or whistling sound that occurs when patients breathe. While some patients may experience symptoms throughout the day, others may experience apparent signs during certain physical activities. Symptoms of asthma include - 

  • Coughing, especially at night while laughing, or exercising
  • Chest pain
  • Frequent infections
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty talking
  • Anxiousness or a feeling of panic

Patients with signs of an asthma flare-up may experience the following - 

  • Sleeping difficulty
  • A sensation of pain or tightness around the chest
  • Fatigue
  • Chronic coughs
  • Wheezing
  • Throat clearing

What Are The Causes Of Asthma?

Asthma can be caused due to a number of factors most of which affect the respiratory system. There is no single cause that triggers asthma, but a variety of factors that can become chronic if left untreated. Here are some triggers which can contribute to the progression of asthma - 

  • Excessive smoking
  • Cold air
  • Air pollutants and irritants
  • Airborne allergens like pollen, dust, spores, pet dander, etc.
  • Respiratory infections
  • Certain medications like beta blockers, aspirin, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Sulfites and preservatives added to some types of foods and beverages
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Chronic stress

When To Consult The Doctor For Asthma?

Chronic asthma can be severe and life-threatening. Get in touch with a doctor for asthma treatment if you experience the following - 

  • Rapid worsening of shortness of breath
  • Symptoms become severe and do not improve even after using a quick-relief inhaler
  • Shortness of breath when you are doing minimal physical activity
  • Frequent coughing or wheezing

What Are The Diagnostic Tests For Asthma?

Asthma diagnoses include a combination of physical exams along with other diagnostic tests to confirm the inflammation of the airways and rule out the possibility of respiratory infections or chronic pulmonary disease (COPD). Furthermore, the doctor may recommend the following tests to diagnose asthma - 

  • Spirometry (to measure lung function)
  • Peak Flow (to measure lung function)
  • Methacholine challenge
  • Sputum eosinophils
  • Nitric oxide test
  • Allergy testing
  • Imaging test
  • Provocative testing for exercise and cold-induced asthma

What Are The Treatment Options For Asthma?

The doctor recommends a treatment plan for asthma based on the type, age, and primary cause of asthma. While there is no permanent cure for the condition, treatment aims to monitor and control symptoms which can eventually lead to flare-ups. There are quick-relief asthma treatment options which include medications like - 

  • Bronchodilators
  • Anti-inflammatories
  • Inhaled corticosteroids
  • Leukotriene modifiers
  • Combination inhalers
  • Theophylline
  • Short-acting beta agonists
  • Anticholinergics
  • Oral and intravenous corticosteroids
  • Long-acting bronchodilators
  • Immunotherapy
  • Biologics

In case of severe asthma, the patient may have to undergo bronchial thermoplasty where the doctor heats the inside of the airways in the lungs with an electrode. The heat reduces the smooth muscles and limits the ability of airways to tighten. This makes it easier for the patient to breathe, thus, reducing the risk of an asthma attack.

Why Choose CMRI for The Treatment Of Asthma?

The Calcutta Medical Research Institute (CMRI) is one of the largest multispecialty hospitals in Kolkata. Our hospital is equipped with state-of-the-art technology, revolutionising the healthcare industry for the best surgical outcomes. 

In addition, CMRI has several eminent specialists, doctors and healthcare providers of national and international reputations for comprehensive and personalised treatment. CMRI provides patient-centric care and empathy from internationally trained nurses to ensure holistic care for patients seeking treatment for asthma. Here are a few advantages of choosing CMRI for asthma treatment- 

  • Highly qualified and experienced doctors
  • 440-bed capacity along with cutting-edge technology and the latest medical equipment
  • Hygienic and patient-friendly infrastructure
  • Thorough screening and diagnosis
  • Transparent Pricing Structure for cost-effective treatment
  • Patient-centric, high-quality care for a high success rate
  • Pain management and palliative care
  • Complete and coordinated care for patients with all types of cancers.


Is asthma curable?

No, there is no cure for asthma. However, there are certain treatment options which can help you manage the symptoms of asthma effectively. Get in touch with a doctor in case your symptoms become worse or do not improve with time.

Is asthma contagious?

No, asthma is a non-communicable disease which affects people of all age groups. However, people with a family history of asthma are at an increased risk of being diagnosed with the condition.

Is asthma genetic?

Asthma is a condition which can occur due to both genetic and environmental factors.

What drink is good for asthma?

Certain drinks such as caffeinated drinks, and fortified milk may reduce the obstruction in the airways.

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