Evaluation and specialized treatment of:
• Asthma, exercise-induced asthma
What is Asthma?
If we look at asthma in its simplest form, asthma is inflammation of the breathing tubes in the lungs. The breathing tubes that make up the airways in the lungs, especially the medium but also the small breathing tubes tend to be the primary locations involved with asthma. The breathing tubes are lined with mucous membranes like the lining inside of the nose and sinuses. In asthma, just like in allergies of the nose, there is inflammation involving these mucous membranes. That inflammation leads to increased mucus production, thickening of the membranes, thickening of the underlying structures and tightening of the muscles that surround the breathing tubes. The end result of this is a narrowed airway to breathe through, and of course more difficulty breathing. The wheeze that occurs with asthma is caused by whistling of resonance of airways as air passes through the narrowed breathing tubes. What surprises a lot of people is that many people with asthma don’t wheeze. Instead many patients with asthma have more trouble with coughing or, especially in adults, breathing tightness. The breathing tightness can be mistaken for fatigue and poor exercise tolerance.
Most people with asthma use a medication called albuterol. Albuterol temporarily provides relaxation of muscles that surround the breathing tubes to allow the breathing tubes to temporarily open. This temporarily makes it easier to breathe. However, albuterol does not do anything for the underlying inflammation that causes asthma. Most commonly inhaled steroid medications are used to treat the inflammation that underlies asthma. These inhaled steroid medications are safe because the doses are very low. Inhaled steroids medications can be used safely lifelong. These steroid medications as the mainstay of asthma management.
Utah is a beautiful state full of ecological diversity, outdoor activities and abundant recreational opportunities. However, contrary to the popular notion of decreased allergy and improved respiratory issues in the dry Intermountain West, we find that many people suffer with more allergy problems in Utah and the surrounding areas than many other parts of the country. This is due in part to the presence of similar pollen exposure as we would experience in other parts of the country plus the pollens that are more unique to the Intermountain West such as sagebrush and Juniper.
The air-quality also seems to play a major role. Unfortunately, the Wasatch front is plagued by less than optimal air quality throughout much of the year. This seems to contribute to both allergy and asthma problems, along with many other health issues. It is clear that poor air quality may worsen the inflammatory effects of pollen exposure thus increasing the difficulty we see with asthma, chronic sinus problems as well as nasal and eye allergy issues.
In spite of these problems, with appropriate treatment, asthma and allergy problems can be well-controlled, thus allowing restoration of quality-of-life. By keeping the allergies well-controlled we can restore people’s ability to enjoy the natural beauty that surrounds us in the state of Utah and continue to engage in the abundant activities that are offered.
We also evaluate and treat:
• Allergies to pets (indoor & outdoor)
• Chronic sinusitis
• Allergy to bees and other stinging insects
• Food allergies
• Eosinophilic esophagitis
• Peanut or nut allergies
• Hives (urticaria
Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 8:30AM-5:30PM
Tuesday, Thursday: 9:30AM-6:30PM
Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 8:30AM-5:00PM
Tuesday, Thursday: 9:30AM-6:00PM