As the level of pollution is increasing with the change in weather condition, major areas in Pune are at greater risk of causing asthma attack. According to the Air Quality Index website’s figure realised on Sunday, Bhosari and Hadapsar ranks top on the list with 223 that is Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5, Shivajinagar with 165 (PM 2.5) and Alandi at 132 (PM 2.5).
Doctors suggest inhalation therapy to improve symptom control and lung function among adolescents, children and adults. The change in weather can affect anyone, the children, elderly, pregnant women and those with a compromised immune system.
Dr Mahendra Kawadia, Director, Kawadia Hospital said, “It becomes difficult for asthmatic patients to breathe with the onset of winter. Many patients are misinformed about asthma causes and its treatment options available. It is a necessity to educate the stakeholders about the minimal side-effects of inhaled corticosteroids which is also called ‘Inhalation Therapy’,” said Kawadia.
Explaining what is ‘Inhalation therapy’, Dr Barnali Bhattacharya, Pediatric Pulmonologist at Kartik Clinic said, “The natural steroid present in the human body helps deal with inflammation and it is also safe for children and pregnant women.”
Inhalation therapy consists of an inhaler pump to access the corticosteroids into airway passage and relieve the breathing problem. “The word steroids evoke apprehensions in the minds of patients and it also causes them to shy away from inhalers and opt for oral medications. Inhaled corticosteroids are recommended rather than oral corticosteroids,” said Bhattacharya.
Dr Amir Khoja, Pulmonologist at Ruby Hall Clinic also explained the benefits of the inhalation therapy. He said that in the inhalation therapy the inflammation of the airway requires a very small quantity of corticosteroids.
“Around 25 to 100 micrograms of corticosteroids is needed, but when it is consumed through the oral or intestinal route the amount administered is very large about 10,000 micrograms since only a fraction of the drug administered drug reaches the lungs. This means that every time an asthma patient pops a pill or a tablet, he or she is actually taking almost 200 times the amount of medication required, leading to ill effects on health”, said Dr Khoja.