Asthma is a common, chronic inflammation of the airways to the lungs (i.e. bronchi and bronchioles)

  • Inflammation leads to swelling and mucus production, resulting in reduced airflow and bronchospasm
  • During an acute asthma attack, constriction of the bronchi smooth muscle may cause significant airflow obstruction
  • Common symptoms of an asthma attack include shortness of breath, chest tightness, wheezing and coughing
  • Severe cases of asthma may be life threatening if left untreated

Asthma may be caused by a number of environmental triggers, including:

ass face
  • Allergens (e.g. pollen, moulds)
  • Smoke / scented products (e.g. perfumes, cigarettes)
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Food preservatives and certain medications
  • Arthropods (e.g. dust mites)
  • Cold air
  • Exercise (increases respiratory rate)

Mnemonic:  ASS FACE

Physiology of an Asthma Attack