Updates from Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital and Hospital Foundation
There have been a lot of questions about how those dealing with asthma may be impacted during COVID-19. Initially individuals with asthma were classified at increased risk for severe COVID-19 outcomes.
However, evidence is emerging that may point in the opposite direction. According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, there is no direct evidence that COVID-19 causes increased infection rates in those with asthma.
In an article put out by Med Page Today, Linda Rogers, MD, of Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City reported that under normal circumstances viral infections are a big driver of flares in asthma patients. But research indicates asthma patients with COVID-19 do not appear to have a higher rate of hospitalization or mortality compared with other COVID-19 patients.
That doesn’t mean those with asthma shouldn’t be cautious. People who have asthma symptoms may worry, especially if there are signs of a cold, allergy or other respiratory problems. During these times, it is important to stay in touch with a doctor. It’s especially important to reach out to a medical provider in the case of a persistent cough, fever, or shortness of breath.
If medications aren’t helping, and an individual is experiencing chest pains or pressure, have a hard time breathing, or lips or face are blue, call a doctor or 911 immediately. A 30-day supply of non-prescription drugs on hand is recommended. A doctor, pharmacist, and insurance company can help determine what is needed for an emergency supply of prescription medication.
During these unusual times, those with asthma are advised use an inhaler and keep a nebulizer well-cleaned. Stay away from triggers such as smoke, allergens and air pollution. Avoid close contact with people and don’t share cups, eating utensils, or towels. Stay at home as much as possible, as this will lower the chance of coming into contact with the virus.
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