Asthma

Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA

Family Medicine located in Harlingen, TX

Asthma is a common but potentially serious respiratory condition that affects more than 25 million Americans. If you regularly cough, wheeze, or experience difficulty breathing, don’t wait to seek professional help. At the practice of Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA, family medicine physician Jason Peters, MD, and Victor Gonzalez, PA-C, have years of experience diagnosing and treating asthma. To make an appointment at the practice in Harlingen, Texas, call the office today or click the online booking feature.

Asthma Q & A

What is asthma?

Asthma is a chronic respiratory condition that causes your airways to swell, narrow, and make extra mucus. When combined, these symptoms make it difficult to breathe and can interfere with your ability to work, exercise, or perform other normal activities.

Asthma affects everyone differently. For some people, it’s a minor annoyance that responds to medication and lifestyle changes; for others, it’s a near-constant issue that can lead to a potentially life-threatening asthma attack. 

What are the symptoms of asthma?

Symptoms of asthma include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness
  • Wheezing
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Coughing or wheezing attacks worsened by the cold or flu

As the condition gets worse, you might need to use your quick-relief inhaler more frequently

Who is at risk of asthma?

Anyone can develop asthma, but several factors increase your risk, including:

  • Weight issues
  • Smoking
  • A family history of asthma
  • Exposure to pollution
  • Having an allergic condition like atopic dermatitis

You're also more likely to experience asthma if you work a job that exposes you to chemicals or pesticides, like farming or hairdressing.

How is asthma diagnosed?

To diagnose asthma, your Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA, provider reviews your medical history and asks about the severity of your symptoms, including if they interfere with your ability to work or exercise. 

Next, your provider conducts several tests, including:

Peak flow

A peak flow test measures how forcefully you exhale. If you have lower than average readings, it may indicate your asthma is getting worse.

Spirometry

Spirometry is a quick test that measures the narrowing of your bronchial tubes. During spirometry, your provider measures how much air you exhale after a deep breath and how quickly you can exhale.

How is asthma treated?

Treatment of asthma usually involves several aspects, including learning to recognize your triggers, taking steps to avoid them, and keeping a daily diary of your symptoms. If you have a mild to moderate case of asthma, these steps may be enough to provide significant relief.

If you have a more serious case of asthma, your provider might recommend prescription medication. There are several drugs that can treat the uncomfortable side effects of asthma, including corticosteroids, combination inhalers, leukotriene modifiers, and quick-relief medications.

To receive comprehensive treatment for asthma, make an appointment at the practice of Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA, by calling the office today or booking online.