Fighting Asthma - Part 2

By: Richard Lowe, Jr.

One week my wife had severe asthma and it would not go away. In fact, we had visited our doctor numerous times for adrenalin shots. These helped in the short term (for a day or so) but the asthma just returned again later. Both of us wanted to resolve this condition on a more permanent basis, as it was becoming very difficult to deal with.

We talked to our doctor, a wonderful man named Dr. Frischer, and he directed us to a specialist. Someone who was familiar with the disease and could help us come up with a permanent handling.

I must admit that my wife did not want to go to this specialist. She didn't say why, she just was not comfortable with him. However, I convinced her, and before long we had pulled up to the doctors office, which was in a little hospital in Paramount, California.

The specialist took one look at Claudia and knew that her asthma was terrible.

He had Claudia breath into a tube, then tisked to himself when he saw the result. It appeared that Claudia was not getting anywhere near the amount of oxygen that a normal person received. In fact, her lungs were drawing in about a forth of the normal amount of air - it was pretty bad that day. Which meant, of course, it was the perfect day to see the specialist.

The guy did some more tests, then recommended an allergy panel to determine exactly which substance was causing Claudia's condition. He explained that asthma is usually triggered by something, some particle in the air. It could be dust, pollen, cockroach droppings, cat dandruff or any other small particle.

We agreed and the panel was done. The doctor swabbed her arm with about twenty different substances, explaining that they would swell up into little bumps if anything registered. One substance registered strongly - simple dust. It seemed that Claudia's asthma was caused by dust.

While we were there, the specialist increased her Prednisone dosage to 60 milligrams. This is an incredibly high dosage of this drug, but based upon Claudia's poor breathing, the doctor felt it was necessary. If you remember from the previous article (part 1), prednisone has the side effect of making Claudia extremely hostile to our poor cat Baby. Well, during the next few weeks that cat had to be guarded night and day by Al and myself to keep Claudia from killing it.

The result of this trip? We finally realized the link between the environment and Claudia's asthma. We decided to be a little more proactive, and purchased some air filters for the living room and bedroom. These helped control the asthma to a certain extent. The other result? Now Claudia was feeling the other major short term side effect of Prednisone - it's very difficult to stop taking..

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