Coronavirus COVID-19 Information
- Information for patients who have a scheduled test, appointment or telehealth visit
- Information for hospital visitors
- Donations: How you can help
Make an Appointment with an Asthma Specialist
Hasbro Children's Hospital
Asthma is a chronic disease marked by narrowed airways and excessive production of mucus.
More than 26 million Americans have asthma, and about seven million are children. While most have mild to moderate asthma, about 10 percent have severe asthma that standard medications don’t control.
In severe acute cases, you may have to seek treatment for your child at a hospital emergency department or urgent care center.
A combination of environmental and inherited factors likely causes asthma, but it’s not known for certain.
For some people, attacks may be triggered by:
Risk factors include having a parent or sibling who has asthma; exposure to secondhand smoke or other kinds of air pollution; and having an allergic condition such as rhinitis (hay fever) or atopic dermatitis.
The course of the illness and its intensity vary widely from patient to patient. Severe attacks can be life-threatening.
Asthma has been on the rise since the early 1980s, and the percentage of young Rhode Islanders who are affected exceeds the national average.
The signs and symptoms of asthma are:
It’s important to begin treating asthma as soon as possible to keep the disease from worsening and causing lung damage.
Your physician or a specialist will review your child’s medical history, do a physical exam, and order diagnostic tests, such as a lung function test and possibly imaging (X-rays) of the lungs. A peak flow meter may be used at home or at routine visits to measure your child’s breathing.
Asthma isn’t curable, but there are steps you and your child can take to control the disease. These include:
Your physician will share more strategies to lessen asthma attacks in number or intensity.
Asthma can’t be cured, but medicines can control it. A quick-relief inhaler that dispenses albuterol is one. Albuterol also can be given by using a nebulizer, a device that dispenses a fine mist of medicine that the child inhales.
If your child struggles with severe asthma, the experts of the Severe Asthma Clinic at Hasbro Children’s Hospital can help.
Biologic therapy may help bring your son's or daughter’s severe asthma under control. These medicines, given by injection or by intravenous infusion every few weeks, work by targeting a cell or protein in the body that stimulates airway inflammation.
We take a team approach to bringing a young patient’s asthma under control. When needed, we work closely with our colleagues in gastroenterology, otolaryngology, psychology, psychiatry, and sleep medicine to ensure that every child gets the most effective care.
Following up regularly with your child’s physician is a necessity, to monitor the illness and adjust medicines as needed for best control.