Managing Asthma Can Reduce ER Trips

Asthma patients should avoid seasonal allergies exposure

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) When teaching children fire drills, the mantra is STOP, DROP, and ROLL. When teaching asthma attack prevention, a new mantra of MANAGE, ANTICIPATE,  and AVOID is in order.

Doctors are advising patients to realize that asthma is a chronic disorder with potentially life-threatening episodes. Asthma must be properly managed to minimize life-threatening episodes.

"Anticipate and avoid what prompts your asthma attacks"

Dr. Sandra Schneider, president of the American College of Emergency Physicians(ACEP), advised, "Each day, thousands of people end up in the ER because of poorly controlled asthma. Many don't understand that asthma is a chronic condition that needs to be managed regularly."

She also notes that it is a serious, but treatable disease, and when properly managed, visits to the emergency room can be reduced or possibly eliminated.

Asthma triggers include: smoke; dust mites, pollen, mold, perfume, scented soap, respiratory infections, and extreme weather conditions.

The ACEP recommends recognizing and responding to these  warning signs can help people avoid an asthma emergency:

  • Wheezing and/or coughing which disturbs sleep  
  • Using  a quick-relief inhaler more than twice a week
  • Missing work or school due to breathing problems
  • Constant breathing trouble during physical activity
  • Inability to take part in normal, everyday activities
  • Needing urgent or emergency care

In Depth

  • About 7.1 million children in the United States have asthma and asthmatic episodes, accounting for 17 percent of children seen in emergency departments
  • In the past 30 years, the number of people in the United States with asthma has tripled to nearly 25 million, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • In 2007, there were nearly 17.5 million asthma-related emergency department visits nationwide
Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
April 17, 2011
Last Updated:
April 21, 2011