Adult onset asthma and management.

Patient

Q: So I just got over a pretty bad cold and sinus infection that lasted about 8 days. I went to the doctor and my lungs were clear but my peak flow was at about 70% for my height. At the beginning of the cold, it was pretty tough to breathe. I had to use my friends inhaler because it felt like my airway was closing up. I have used the inhaler several times when it was harder to breathe than normal, i had a constant dry cough, and I could just feel the tightness in my chest and the inhaler made it tons easier to breathe and my cough went away. Im not wheezing (im in nursing school and have used my stethoscope to listen to myself) but exhaling is definitely taking more effort than normal. I have never had asthma symptoms before so I dont know whats going on and if i should go to the doctor...

Doctor

A:   You may be having asthma or may be suffering from sequlae of the URTI that you recently had. The symptoms seem to be more predective of asthama.In any case you should see your family physician and get a physical done along with other tests like a pulmonary function test +/- a bronchodilator challenge test which will help make the diagnosis of asthma. Also try and analyze when and in which setting the symptoms occur and whether there is any environmental factor like allergens leading to the symptoms. All the best.

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