Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Should I carry my inhaler with me?"
I have moderate chronic asthma that is further agitated by excercise. I take an albuterol inhaler (ProAir) before I exercise and a dry powder inhaler on a daily basis. Also, I have been diagnosed with non-allergic rhinitis which I control by taking Nasonex. Is it necessary for me to carry one of my inhalers (or get a new one prescribed to me) with me in case of an asthma attack? I am an otherwise healthy fifteen year old girl.
Yes! An asthma attack can occur at any time, even in a person whose asthma is usually under very good control, so it is essential to have a rescue inhaler (your albuterol or ProAir inhaler) with you at all times. Please make an appointment with the doctor that is treating your asthma, usually a pulmonologist, Ear, nose and throat doctor, or primary care doctor, to discuss this concern. Request that your doctor write out an "Action Asthma Plan" to instruct you how to take your inhalers depending on the severity of your symptoms. I would recommend asking for a new inhaler to be prescribed for you so that you can always have one with you at home and then one to take with you in your purse or bag wherever you go. Asthma is common and is controllable, but it is also not a condition to be taken lightly as an attack can occur at any time and can be very serious and even deadly if you do not have access to rescue medication. Please schedule an appointment with your treating doctor as soon as possible to discuss your medications and a plan of action for when you have an asthma attack.
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