Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Did getting pneumonia make my asthma worse?"
I've had asthma my whole life almost but now it is a lot worse. I had pneumonia earlier this year and I think that it might be because of that. Could having pneumonia have made my asthma worse?
As a lifelong asthmatic you know that there are many different triggers that can affect your asthma. Pulmonary infections are certainly something that can trigger an asthma flare or cause recurrent asthma symptoms even after the underlying infection is treated. In this case, the best thing for you to do is see your pulmonologist. If your asthma has been managed by your primary care physician, he or she might want you to see a pulmonary specialist given that your previously stable asthma is now a lot worse. It will be important to get repeat pulmonary function tests to compare to your prior studies to see how much worse your lung function actually is at this point. Your doctor will also want to examine your carefully to look for any other signs of infection or allergy triggers. You may still have some underlying lung changes from your earlier infection that can be noted when listening to your lungs. Overall, it is likely that your doctor will want to adjust your medications to help get you through this period of recovering from a pneumonia. It is not unusual for asthmatics to need additional steroids in the setting of a bacterial infection. The bottom line is that you should definitely see your doctor as soon as possible so you can begin moving forward with adjusting your asthma treatment to get back to your normal baseline.
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