Asthma In Older Adults

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Asthma in elderly is undertreated and has led to increased morbidity and mortality. Aging affect airway responses and immune function and influence the effectiveness of emerging therapies. Asthma in older adults is divided into two groups; long standing that had the disease from childhood and late onset asthma. Physiological changes that occur during aging decrease the lungs functional capacity. Aging reduces the capacity of DNA repair affecting lungs to regenerate and overtime pulmonary function becomes compromised. Due to this changes pulmonary function test used in diagnosis asthma does not distinguish superimposed active disease. Asthma in older adults shows symptoms which are similar to COPD making it difficult to diagnose and treat (Al-Alawi, …show more content…
Asthma is heterogeneous disease and it has shown increasing emergence of varying phenotype. As a result, taking a comprehensive clinical history, environmental exposures and medication history is critical in diagnosing and managing asthma. Asthma management in in old adults is the same as for all ages. A multidimensional intervention strategy is the best in the management of asthma in the older adult. These interventions include pharmacotherapy, individual rehabilitation, and social interventions. Addressing specific age-related issues such as comorbidities and acute care complications improves quality of life and cost-effectiveness if asthma is management appropriately. Effective therapeutic management for asthma includes education, monitoring, effective control environmental factors and pharmacological (Al-Alawi, Hassan &Chotirmall …show more content…
Guidelines for asthma management recommend a stepwise approach. Every step, preferred options are explored to manage asthma. The stepwise approach to therapy it is recommended to increase the treatment options for uncontrolled asthma and decrease amount treatment options for controlled asthma to maintain control and to reduce the risk of side effects (Melani, 2013).
Deciding which stepwise approach is appropriate for a patient depends on whether long-term control therapy is being initiated for the first time or whether therapy is being adjusted. Controlled asthma should be monitored by health care professionals and patients at regular intervals. Follow ups depends on the severity of asthma and how the patients is doing with self-management. Usually the patient is seen approximately 1-3 months following short exacerbations after the initial visit and every three months (Melani, 2013).
Corticosteroids use is recommended for partly controlled and uncontrolled asthma. Several studies shows that inhaled corticosteroids are effective in asthma control. Inhaled corticosteroids are often the treatment of choice because of their anti-inflammatory activity and low incidence of side effects in the elderly. During acute asthma exacerbation, Inhaled beta agonists are recommended. Short acting beta agonist such as albuterol is the most commonly used (Melani,

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