New guidelines to prevent, avoid asthma attacks listed

November 14th, 2007 - 10:30 am ICT by admin  

The guidelines, from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute’s National Asthma Education and Prevention Program (NAEPP).

The main highlights of the 2007 asthma guidelines were presented during the Annual Meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) in an attempt not only to increase awareness of the new recommendations, but also to help make sure they get put into practice.

“Asthma is not an event, it is a chronic disease that can be managed so that symptoms are controlled and severe attacks are prevented. The guidelines underscore the fact that people who are diagnosed with asthma do not have to suffer breathing difficulties or cut back on their activities. We want to make this a reality for all asthma patients,” said Michael B. Foggs, M.D chief of asthma, allergy and immunology, Advocate Health Care, Chicago.

According to the NAEPP report, under-diagnosis and inadequate treatment are significant contributors to poor asthma control and the worsening of asthma severity.

The new guidelines are the first major update in a decade; include the latest information on the best way to manage the chronic disease.

Highlights of the guidelines include emphasis on ongoing monitoring and management of asthma, routine use of inhaled corticosteroids as the standard of care for most patients with chronic persistent asthma, distinguishing between managing acute and chronic asthma, and the identification of new risk factors for the disease.

Dr. Foggs said that the guidelines put a new emphasis on the physician-patient partnership and ongoing monitoring and management. Specific recommendations include:

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