Asthma Animation

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , /

– [Narrator] With normal
breathing, the airways of the lungs are fully open as in this
cross section of an airway. For a person with asthma,
the airway smooth muscle that circles the airway may
become thicker than normal. During an asthmatic attack, the response to an asthma
trigger such as an allergen or irritant, the airway
smooth muscle may contract leading to airway narrowing
and breathing difficulties. During bronchial thermoplasty,
a small flexible tube is advanced into the airway through a standard flexible bronchoscope placed through the mouth or nose. No incision is required. The Allaire device has an
expandable wire basket at the tip. And when it is expanded,
the four arms of the basket come in contact with and fit
snugly against the airway wall. The expanded basket will then deliver controlled radio frequency
energy for about 10 seconds to heat the airway smooth muscle. Up to one third of the
targeted lung areas are treated during a single session. A total of three procedures
are currently needed for complete treatment. Once the treatment session is completed, the device and the bronchoscope are moved. The controlled heat delivered
during bronchial thermoplasty is designed to reduce the
amount of airway smooth muscle in the airway wall. By reducing the amount
of airway smooth muscle, the procedure may reduce the
ability of the airway walls to contract and narrow in
response to irritation, infection, or inflammation.

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