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Asthma

Question
Posted by: SunShine | 2020/06/10

Q.

Asthma and Covid-19

Morning Prof I hope you are well. I am a 51 year old obese, hypertensive, brittle asthmatic female. I have a Pulmonologist who looks after my asthma. I take medication for my hypertension, and currently on Weigh Less for my weight loss. My asthma flares up this time of year - I take Fox Air and Ventalin daily - and Symbicord and Pulmicord when needed. I also use Prednisone when I get a flare up (although I try and avoid this). When I get admitted to hospital, I am usually on Aminofilin and Solumedrol drips. I nebulise when I get congested with Combivent, and in some cases, Pulmicord. I have been working at home for the last 15 weeks - and I have not left my house during this time - not once. I am PETRIFIED of getting Covid-19 because I have been intubated once before for my asthma and I know what this feels like. My work has confirmed that we will work remotely at least until the end of June. I am working building up my immune with vitamines and fresh vegetables and fruit. I am SO anxious going back to the office (I even get anxiety attacks) - I am considering getting a letter from my Pulmonologist stating that I am immune compromised and would need to work from home until it is more safe to go to work. Are there cases where people with severe asthma have survived Covid-19? Is there anything else (I am working on losing the weight) that I can do more to prepare IF I get the virus? I would appreciate ANY advise that you can offer. Thanks.

Expert's Reply

A.

Asthma Expert
- 2020/06/19

Patients with asthma who are on oral corticosteroids or frequent doses of oral corticosteroids are a higher risk for severe disease and death for COVID-19. Whilst the risk in this group is elevated (probably 2 or 3 fold) most such asthmatics will not land up in hospital or contract COVID-19. You need to take all the necessary precautions but also be pragmatic. I suggest you discuss these concerns with healthcare provider and also take all the necessary precautions that are practically possible. I am unsure which country you are writing from but I presume it is likely South Africa. There are some national directives regarding risk factors and individuals in an enhanced risk category are allowed to work from home.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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