Exercise and sports that require continuous activity, especially running and cold-weather activities, can induce asthmatic symptoms. Exercise-induced asthma affects about 17 million Americans, many of which are children.
coughing, wheezing, chest tightness, breathing difficulty and shortness
of breath. Children with exercise-induced asthma often start to
experience symptoms five to 20 minutes after they begin to exercise.
exercise-induced asthma in your child can be difficult because symptoms
often take a subtle form. Your child may complain that he cannot run as
quickly as friends or may express a dislike for sports. Avoiding sports
or physical activity limits quality of life for some children and can
lead to problems with fellow students and low self-esteem.
that may act as triggers for exercise-induced asthma include soccer,
basketball, field hockey, long-distance running, cross-country skiing
"There is no cure for exercise-induced asthma," said
Dr. Michael Kaliner, medical director of the Institute for Asthma and
Allergy in Chevy Chase, Md. "But by preventing inflammation, you can
successfully reduce the chances of having an asthmatic attack."
It is important for children to receive proper diagnosis and treatment.
children 5 years and older, one option is Intal," Kaliner said. "It
works by preventing certain cells from releasing substances that may
cause inflammation in the air passages. It is important to note that
Intal should be used prior to engaging in exercise, as it cannot treat
acute asthma attacks."
It is also a good idea to provide your child's gym teacher or coach with written instructions, including:
* The nature and severity of the exercise-induced asthma
* Which medicines are used to prevent it and how to use them
* Techniques to avoid exercise-induced asthma, including a sufficient warm-up period
* Warning signs when your child is experiencing an asthma attack
With appropriate management, most children are able to exercise and perform to their full ability.
most common side effects from Intal therapy in controlled clinical
studies were throat irritation or dryness, unpleasant taste, cough,
wheeze and nausea. Intal Inhaler should not be used in patients who have
shown hypersensitivity to cromolyn sodium or other ingredients in this
product. Intal has no role in the treatment of an acute asthma attack.
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