According to a new study
by John Dickinson, head of the respiratory clinic at Kent University’s School of Sport and Exercise Science, athletes have higher asthma rates than average citizens. For example, 70% of the swimmers on the British Swimming Squad have asthma. So do about 50% of cross country skiers, and about 33% of cyclists. The national average asthma rate is significantly lower, a mere 8 to 10%.
At the Seattle Aquarium this week, a sea otter named Mishka
became the first sea otter to be diagnosed with asthma. Mishka’s trainer noticed she started having trouble breathing when smoke drifted in from nearby wildfires. Dr. Lesanna Lahner xrayed Mishka’s lungs and saw a bunch of abnormal gunk showing up. She then diagnosed Mishka with asthma.
The traditional way to classify diseases was by their symptoms
. But more and more, doctors and scientists are looking at the biological mechanisms that cause the symptoms, and not just the symptoms themselves. This has lead some scientists to believe there are different subtypes of asthma which, though they may have similar symptoms, are caused by different mechanisms and would benefit from different treatments.
We still don’t know exactly what causes asthma. “We know that asthma is related to genes, environment, and the interaction between the two,” said Jin-Ah Park. “But asthma remains poorly understood.”
Park is one of the lead authors on a new study that could impact how various diseases such as asthma and cancer are understood and treated.
When diagnosing pulmonary diseases such as asthma and tuberculosis, doctors frequently use sputum analysis. This analysis is both very important (different types of asthma require different medications) and difficult. The current process requires large samples, shipping those samples to trained operators in specialized labs, and handling of the potentially contagious specimens. Read More
After years of asthma rates rising all around the world, we finally have some good news: in the UK, asthma rates have gone down 10% over the last ten years.
The results come from one of the oldest and longest running asthma surveys in the world-- the Aberdeen School Asthma Study.
A year ago we wrote about bronchial thermoplasty
, a new asthma treatment that works by searing off part of the airway muscles which enlarge and restrict breathing during an asthma attack. A device was developed to do this, Alair
, and then purchased by Boston Scientific for $193,500,000. Executives estimated it would become a billion dollar industry by 2020.
In the news this week, a woman is claiming to have cured her asthma through laughing exercises
. She started taking laughter classes to treat her depression, but found they also greatly improved her respiratory health. She is now training to lead her own classes and thinks laughter therapy would be a good option for other asthmatics.
In New Zealand, 1 out of every 7 children takes asthma medication. It’s estimated that 550,000 school days are lost to asthma every year, and students with asthma often have lower reading achievement.
That’s why New Zealand’s Asthma Foundation wanted a fun, engaging way to raise asthma awareness amongst all students.
Eating a high fiber diet during pregnancy may make your child less likely to develop asthma, says a new study
by microbiologist and immunologist Dr. Alison Thorburn. According to the study, when fiber is broken down acetate, an anti-inflammatory chemical, is produced and passed to the fetus, making the fetus less likely to develop asthma.
C-sections may increase an infant’s risk of developing asthma, diabetes, and obesity, according to a new report by the Institute of Reproductive and Child Health in Beijing.
When analyzing past research, report authors Dr. Jan Blustein and Jianmeng Liu found 23 studies linking Cesarean births to asthma, 20 linking them to type 1 diabetes, and 9 linking them to obesity.
If you have asthma or allergies, then you’re probably well aware of all the grasses and weeds that flourish and mess with your respiratory system during the summer months. But there are other less well known triggers that may be causing you to sneeze and wheeze. Read on to learn what they are and what you can do about them. Read More
Although previous studies had pointed towards a link between increased soy intake and decreased asthma symptoms, a new clinical trial has shown that taking soy supplements does not improve one’s asthma symptoms.
The previous studies had been population based, whereas the clinical trial was “multicenter, randomized, double-blind, [and] placebo-controlled.”
According to a new study, up to 10% of those with asthma may have a peanut allergy but not know it because their asthma symptoms (coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath) are so similar to their peanut allergy symptoms.
The study looked at over 1,500 children at a respiratory clinic in Toledo, Ohio and discovered that 10% tested positive for peanut sensitivity.
In potentially exciting news for asthmatics, researchers from Cardiff University and King’s College are making the bold claim that in as little as five years they may be able to prevent asthmatics from ever having another asthma attack, potentially putting an end to the need for inhalers and nebulizers