Asthma

Updated 16 September 2014

Asthma and your medical history

Do you suspect you may have asthma? When your doctor makes an assessment of your condition, he may want a detailed medical history.

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Do you suspect you may have asthma?

When your doctor makes an assessment of your condition, he may want a detailed medical history.

Here is an example of the kind of questions asked during an asthma medical.


Do you have episodes of:

  • Coughing?
  • Chest tightness?
  • Wheezing?
  • Shortness of breath?

Is there a pattern to the symptoms? Do they change according to:

  • Seasons?
  • Places (at work, in the garden, in your kitchen)?
  • Things (animals, smoke, perfume)?
  • Times of day or night?
  • Activities or exercise?

How did the disease develop?

  • How old were you when you first experienced the symptoms?
  • When was your asthma first diagnosed?
  • Is there a family history of allergies?
  • Has your condition changed over the years (worsened, gone into remission)?
  • How did you respond to treatment?
  • How have you managed your asthma?
  • How do you currently respond to treatment?

At home, work, school or daycare, do you come across aggravating factors such as:

  • Allergens?
  • Exercise?
  • Occupational activities?
  • Irritants such as smoke, odours or pollutants?
  • Extreme emotions?
  • Drugs?
  • Food and food additives?
  • Weather changes?

How does this disease impact on you and your family?

  • Do you suffer life-threatening attacks?
  • Do you miss out on work/school/social activities?
  • Does your asthma interfere with sleep?
  • How does asthma affect growth, behaviour, concentration and performance at school, daily routine or your finances?

Are there factors that interfere with your adherence to medication, such as:

  • School/childcare?
  • Work?
  • Do you understand how to take your medication?
  • Substance abuse?

What is your (and your family’s) perception of the disease?

  • Do you understand the disease and how it’s treated?
  • Can you cope with the disease and its management?
  • Do you have support when you need it?
  • Are you coping financially?
  • Do you have any beliefs about the condition that you would like to discuss?

- (Health24.com)
 

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Asthma Expert

Professor Keertan Dheda has received of several prestigious awards including the 2014 Oppenheimer Award, and has published over 160 peer-reviewed papers and holds 3 patents related to new TB diagnostic or infection control technologies. He serves on the editorial board of the journals PLoS One, the International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Medicine, Lancet Respiratory Diseases and Nature Scientific Reports, amongst others.Read his full biography at the University of Cape Town Lung Institute

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