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Asthma

Alternative Asthma Testing

08/16/2001

Question:

I have a question what other types of test can be used to rule in or rule out asthma? I have had spirometers done, peak flow readings done in his office, and he ordered some test sort of like the spirometer with/without diffusion? What other test are their and where can I get info on them? Also could the not beinmng improvment be due to the Asthma med Advair Diskus 500/50 I had previosly been on Pulmicort and Serevent and had addd to these Singulair. At the time the singulair was added I was having a bad asthma flare up that I found out after about three months was being caused by an AED called Topamax. Shorly after I came off it I improved a little but then I was switched to the Advair the Advair and Topamax both contain lactose and I was just recently diagnosed with a mild milk allergy could the lactose be the culprit or the Advair just be the wrong medicine? I took the Pulmicort Turbuhaler and Serevent inhaler for a long period of time withou any problems. Now I dont seem to have any control. Also would usually having the spirometer done after receiving a breathing treament with a nebulizer and the last time with mdi and spacer never used spacer before could this make a difference in the final readings What other pulmonary disorders could he be wanting to check for since all chest x rays have been normal? Thanks

Answer:

If asthma was not confirmed by the testing you already had and your lung function is near normal or normal, you should have a methacholine challenge test to confirm or exclude asthma. Not responding to medications could indicate a different reason for your symptoms such as gastroesophageal reflux, heart problems, other non asthma respiratory conditions (ie. COPD, vocal cord dysfunction). You need to be seen by an asthma specialist (allergist or pulmonologist) if you aren`t already doing so, who can sort this out for you.

For more information:

Go to the Asthma health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Jonathan   Bernstein, MD Jonathan Bernstein, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati